The prestigious Washington and Lee University recently took action to remove a plaque that honored Robert E. Lee’s horse, Traveller. In recent years, the school has been attacked by the woke mob based on Washington and Lee’s namesake and other Southern ties.
General Robert E. Lee served as president of the then-named Washington College following his service as a Confederate general in the American Civil War. Lee sought to improve the state of education in the South after the destruction that ensued from the devastating war.
“So greatly have [educational] interests been disturbed [in] the South, and so much does its future condition depend upon the rising generation, that I consider the proper education of its youth one of the most important objects now to be attained, and one from which the greatest benefits may be expected,” Lee said.
However, given Lee’s ties to the confederacy, many have called for Washington and Lee University to distance itself from one of its most important benefactors. Apparently, Robert E. Lee’s horse has not been spared from this either. For years, a plaque was mounted above Traveller’s grave to commemorate the beloved horse. The plaque read, “The last home of Traveller. Through war and peace the faithful, devoted and beloved horse of General Robert Lee. Placed by the Virginia Division, United Daughters of the Confederacy.”
President of Students for Historical Preservation Kamron Spivey commented on the University’s decision stating, “Traveller was a beloved part of the campus story. People like to hear tales about animals because they do no wrong. That is how Traveller has been immortalized in campus history. He was a faithful horse whose beauty and loyalty Robert E. Lee said would inspire poets. Until this month, very few people seemed bothered by the horse.”
Spivey called out woke administrators at W&L who are trying to hide the Southern history of the school. “Due to a misappreciation of Lee’s contributions and positive legacy as an educator, university officials think any reference to the man is detracting from student enrollment. Rather than confront the issue directly, they are trying to secretly hide their history from the world,” Spivey said. “The university should keep the original markers. If the goal is to contextualize a historic site, there is no better place than the original location they were erected.”
Although in 2021, Washington and Lee University did decide to maintain its name amid calls for it to be changed. According to the University’s Board of Trustees, “Our community holds passionate and divergent opinions about our name. The association with our namesakes can be painful to those who continue to experience racism, especially to African Americans, and is seen by some as an impediment to our efforts to attract and support a diverse community. For others, our name is an appropriate recognition of the specific and significant contributions each man made directly to our institution.”
However, the controversy of erasing our nation’s history is obviously not isolated to Washington and Lee University. Around the country, communities have faced calls to remove monuments, rename historical landmarks, and more.
Featured Image credit: Mathew Benjamin Brady, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/6/69/General_Robert_E._Lee_MET_DP248323.jpg
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