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Preservation Board votes to remove Confederate plaque from Texas Capitol

Johnathan Silver, Austin American-Statesman on

Published in News & Features

AUSTIN, Texas -- In a meeting that didn't last five minutes, the Texas State Preservation Board voted Friday to remove from the Capitol a plaque on a wall near the Rotunda that presents a historically inaccurate retelling of the Civil War.

The plaque, erected in 1959 and titled "Children of the Confederacy Creed," states that slavery was not the underlying cause of the Civil War, which historians say is false.

State lawmakers, led by Rep. Eric Johnson, D-Dallas, have called for the removal of the plaque since 2017. The Preservation Board, which maintains and preserves the Capitol and its grounds, has the authority to remove the plaque. Members include Gov. Greg Abbott, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and House Speaker Dennis Bonnen, R-Angleton.

Abbott, chairman of the preservation board, has said the plaque should be removed, but that any decision to do so should be made by the Legislature. However, Abbott convened Friday's meeting of the six-member preservation board.

The State Preservation Board, the Legislature, the Texas Historical Commission and the Capitol curator all have the authority to remove a plaque in the Capitol that honors the Confederacy and states that slavery was not a cause of the Civil War, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said in an opinion released in November.

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At least 45 state lawmakers have told the American-Statesman the plaque should be taken down.

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