Base of Jefferson Davis statue removed from downtown Memphis

The base of the Jefferson Davis statue was removed from downtown Memphis.

Memphis, Tenn. — Memphis Greenspace Inc. crews removed the base for the Jefferson Davis statute in downtown Memphis on Saturday afternoon.

The pedestal for the statue was loaded onto the back of flat bed trucks and driven down Front Street. Streets in downtown Memphis were blocked off during the removal.

The Jefferson Davis and the Nathan Bedford Forrest statue were removed in December of 2017.

A spokesperson for the city of Memphis stated that city crews were not involved in the removal of the base, and that Memphis Greenspace Inc. hired private contractors to remove the base.

In a statement sent to WREG, Memphis Greenspace Inc. said they were temporarily relocating the statue pedestal and two additional Confederate markers, and that those items “will eventually be moved to an undisclosed, safe location.”

A sculpture of the Ten Commandments, the battle cannons, the fencing around the statue pedestal and the MPD SkyCop were also moved from the park. Memphis Greenspace Inc. said those items will be returned to the city of Memphis.

Memphis Greenspace Inc. director Van Turner said, “We’re expediting our efforts to relocate current Memphis Park items because we feel the dramatic increase of positive energy flowing up and down Riverside, and we want to continue to be a part of its success.”

Memphis Greenspace Inc. said that they are only moving items from the downtown park at this time due to “ongoing litigation”  surrounding Health Sciences Park.