Meck County unity group holds rally to remove century-old Confederate statue in Cornelius


CORNELIUS, N.C. (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) – The statue has stood tall in Cornelius for over 100 years, but some feel the Confederate Soldier needs to go.

All attending a peaceful rally say Confederate monuments cast a shadow of hate across the Tar Heel State. 93 monuments still stand, and the group, Unity in Community is trying to remove one in Cornelius.

“It’s a symbol in our community that is very unwelcoming,” said Unity in Community president, Pam Jones. “It’s about white supremacy and racism.”

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The statue is just off Zion Avenue, and it’s been standing on the property since 1909. It was the place where men in the area enlisted in the Confederate War.

The owners of the land, Mt. Zion Monumental Association didn’t answer a request from Fox 46, but a member of Unity in Community read part of a letter she received to the crowd.

“Your Unity group in your sick attempt at attention is creating a situation that will not end well. You can only poke a dog so long before it bites back, so I think we have their attention,” she read from the letter.

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In June of 2020, the Mt. Zion Monumental Association released a statement saying they realized some people don’t see the memorial as a significant piece of history and they were exploring all options to protect and save the statue.

Some feel it is not happening quickly enough, which is why they are showing support to organizers of the event.

“We are here because we are trying to remove hate from America,” added Gary McFadden, sheriff of Mecklenburg County. “And we want to start with Cornelius and that’s why we’re here.”

The group marched to the statue holding signs and chanting. The land is private property and that is part of what is making this fight a little tougher, but Unity in Community members say they won’t stop until this symbol of hate is removed.

“This is the opening salvo,” added Jones. “What we unfortunately understand, we believe, it may be a protracted struggle.


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