Capitol Commission votes to move Nathan Bedford Forrest bust from Capitol


(WKRN Photo)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — A panel decided Thursday to recommend the bust of Confederate general and early Ku Klux Klan leader Nathan Bedford Forrest be removed from the state Capitol.

The panel also voted to move the statues of Admiral Farragut and Admiral Gleaves, along with Forrest’s bust, from the State Capitol to the Tennessee State Museum.

Governor Bill Lee issued a statement regarding the Nathan Bedford Forrest bust resolution Thursday afternoon.

“I commend members of the State Capitol Commission for taking up the Nathan Bedford Forrest bust issue and arriving at a thoughtful resolution that provides important historical context for the bust at the State Museum. Scripture implores us to live in peaceful unity and I believe today’s actions reflect this and our commitment to remembering all parts of our past.”

Governor Bill Lee

The state Capitol Commission meeting is the first of two votes needed to remove the bust from the Capitol. Governor Bill Lee announced Wednesday he thinks the bust should go in the state museum.

MORE: Protesters take a stance against Forrest bust

The bust was unveiled in 1978 and has sparked multiple protests demanding its removal over the years. The Capitol Commission in 2017 voted against moving it to the state museum.

The removal would also need approval from the state’s Historical Commission. Some Republican officials have instead suggested adding context to the bust and leaving it where it is.

Click here for complete coverage of the Nathan Bedford Forrest bust in the Capitol.

*The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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