Jonesborough assures SLRC Confederate memorial bricks will be issued
Monday, June 29, 2009
JONESBOROUGH, TN – An administrator with the Town of Jonesborough told the SLRC today that the town fully intends to install bricks honoring Confederate soldiers at a public memorial site, as soon as a delay in production is resolved.
Jonesborough Town Recorder Abbey Miller said so far she has about 30 bricks, representing both Confederate and other American war veterans, on back order. “The stone mason who inscribes them has cancer and has had to curtail his work time, and this has caused a delay,” she said. The town expects the orders will be caught up by early August, and donors who have already purchased bricks have been informed accordingly, she said.
The granite bricks, each hand inscribed with the name of a veteran and purchased by private individuals, are being used to pave a section of Jonesborough’s Veterans’ Park. In May the SLRC was contacted by several citizens who had attempted to purchase bricks honoring their Confederate ancestors, only to have their applications refused on grounds that the memorial was to honor only “American” veterans and that Confederates did not qualify. The SLRC in turn wrote to the Mayor of Jonesborough warning the town of the possible consequences of such discriminatory action. The town then reversed its stance and announced that donations for Confederate bricks would be accepted.
A few days later the SLRC received reports that some donors had had their checks returned with a letter advising that orders were being deferred until August. Ms. Miller told the SLRC that this was done as a courtesy to the donors “so they just wouldn’t have these checks outstanding for several weeks while we get caught up.” She said that some donors have instructed her office to hold their checks anyway for as long as necessary, and that this has been done. “Those checks are in my safe in a special file,” she said. “They [additional donors] can still go ahead and send in their applications and we will accept them, we just want them to know about the delay,” she added.
“We will keep them informed by letter about the progress, and we will also post it on our website,” she added.