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Government & Politics

Confederate Talbot Boys Statue to Be Removed from Easton Courthouse Lawn Monday, County Says

Residents left signs protesting the continued presence of the Talbot Boys monument in November 2020. Photo by Bennett Leckrone.

Almost six months after Talbot County Council members voted to remove the Confederate Talbot Boys statue, county officials announced Friday that the monument is expected to be removed Monday.

The statue is believed to be the last Confederate monument on public land in Maryland.

Work to relocate the statue to the Cross Keys Battlefield in Harrisonburg will begin Sunday, according a press release from the county. The statue will be under the control of the nonprofit Shenandoah Valley Battlefields Foundation, according to the release.

The monument, currently located on the county courthouse lawn in Easton, includes the names of Talbot County residents who fought for the Confederacy in the Civil War, and features a soldier holding a Confederate flag.

Civil rights advocates had pushed for the Jim Crow-era statue’s removal for years before the council’s vote in September.

After the county council voted multiple times over the years to keep the statue in place, the Maryland Office of the Public Defender and the Talbot County branch of the NAACP filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court last spring, arguing that the statue was a symbol of white supremacy and that its placement at the front of the courthouse was designed to intimidate Black residents.

In September, Republican County Councilmember Frank Divilio (R) introduced the resolution to remove the statue, which was supported by Councilmembers Pete Lesher (D) and Corey W. Pack (R). Council President Chuck F. Callahan (R) and Laura E. Price (R) voted against the resolution.

The statue’s planned removal on Monday will be six months to the day of the council’s vote.

The Move the Monument Coalition, a group of county residents, raised more than $80,000 to fund the statue’s relocation, according to a Friday press release from the group, and no taxpayer funds were used for the monument’s relocation. Divilio’s resolution last September stipulated that “be paid from private funds and at no cost or expense to the County or its taxpayers.”