Fate of Forsyth Park Confederate Memorial to be decided in coming weeks

SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - A war about a war continues. The city of Savannah gave YOU a voice on the fate of the 142-year-old Confederate Monument that sits in the middle of Forsyth Park.

To try to alleviate the tension and devise a solution, the city opened the door for suggestions through a two-week poll. The poll closed at 5 p.m. on Monday. The city's inbox flooded with 17 letters, 181 emails - and the most popular - almost 5,000 votes on the poll.

A Confederate Memorial Taskforce was created to go through the feedback. It includes members from the Historic Savannah Foundation, Georgia Historical Society, Historian and Tour Guide Footprints of Savannah, Historic Preservation and Urban Planning of Chatham Savannah Metropolitan Planning Commission, Historian and Tour Guide, Day Clean Journeys, Geechee Kunda, and SCAD. The city says they chose a diverse group with different backgrounds - but who all understand Savannah's rich history.

"They will review it individually, then as a group, then provide a recommendation to the mayor. We expect that recommendation at the very beginning of December," said Michelle Gavin with the city of Savannah.

The big question is - what are the results? That's the secret until the task force has time to sit down and dig through them. To give us a better idea of peoples' thoughts, WTOC created our own poll.

Our results show people don't think it's necessary to modify the monument or add interpretive language. With only slightly higher numbers, relocating doesn't seem to be an option either. Eighty-five percent of people in our poll say leave it alone. People in the park today agree.

"I think it's unnecessary. I think it's removing a part of history that's really important for the local area," says visitor, Andrew Harris.

"It's been fine like this for how many years now? Since the Civil War? I think it's fine," agreed Richard Mann.

As far as relocation, most people wondered how that would change the problem, much less where they would move it.

"I have no idea...not in my backyard," Mann said.

The city's poll is closed, but they say you can still send them emails and letters if you want your opinion to be considered. Once the results are tallied, you will know what will happen to this monument by the end of the year.

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