All Right, Who Vandalized This Jefferson Davis Monument?
Texas State University's campus has been abuzz ever since someone took a can of spray paint to a historical marker bearing Confederate President Jefferson "We're So Going to Win" Davis's name, KXAN reports.
Erected (heh) by the Texas Division of the Daughters of the Confederacy in honor of a highway project that never got off the ground, the monument "sits on a [Texas Department of Transportation] right of way, and the campus is still waiting on approval to move it," according to KXAN.
Apparently, some people don't want to wait, and have taken matters into their own hands, which bugged Linda Coker, a volunteer with the Hays County Historical Commission. Coker told KXAN that defacing the marker was a "coward's way of making a statement....It's history. Good, bad, indifferent, it's our history; it's what made us. You learn from it; you don't repeat it. But you don't get rid of it."
We get the sentiment, but we wonder how much there really is to learn from an inartfully cleaved chunk of concrete doubling as a road sign. Still, the Hays County Commission hopes to relocate the slab to a "public cemetery," according to KXAN. Which is kind of weird, because those people probably didn't sign up to rest in peace beside a Confederate highway marker.
According to the Federal Highway Administration, the idea for the Jefferson Davis Highway was conceived in 1913, as a
more racist counterpart to a planned Lincoln Highway announced a year before. As the FHW, a United Daughters of the Confederacy representative named Mrs. Alexander B. White (this was before women had their own first names) dreamed of an "ocean to ocean highway from Washington to San Diego, through the southern states, [by] the name of the Jefferson Davis National Highway; the same to be beautified, and historic places on it suitably and permanently marked."
Poor Mrs. Alexander B. White probably wouldn't find a spray-paint-slash suitable or beautified, and she'd probably roll over in her grave, which, incidentally, might be right next to the marker's new home. So maybe it all works out in the end.
In the meantime, university police are investigating the vandalism. We hope justice will be served. Whatever that might be.