FRANKLIN TOWNSHIP -- A 90-year-old Confederate marker that was damaged when the city of Franklin removed it has been refurbished and returned to Franklin Township, The Journal-News reported.
The bronze plaque that was affixed to a five-ton rock was damaged during its overnight removal Aug. 16 and sent by the city to a repair facility in Columbus, according to City Manager Sonny Lewis.
The small community became a local locus of controversy Aug. 16, when the nearby city of Franklin quietly removed the plaque from its spot on Dixie Memorial Highway and handed it over to its original owner, Franklin Township.
The monument had gone largely unnoticed throughout its 90-year residence in that spot -- so much so that officials didn't notice it had traded hands when lines between city and township were redrawn in 1990 -- but the white supremacist violence centered around a similar statue in Charlottesville, Virginia, sparked a renewed focus on Confederate memorials across the country.
The repaired plaque was delivered to township officials Tuesday, he said.
Lewis said the plaque that honors Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee and the Dixie Highway was put through an acid wash and curing process as it was refurbished.
Lewis said the city has not received the repair invoice, but estimated costs would be about $2,000.
Last week, Franklin Twp. officials said the monument would be returned to public display. Trustees President Brian Morris said his goal is to determine a location where the monument will be moved to on township property when the township trustees meet on Oct. 12.
“A re-dedication ceremony date will be established once the monument is located on a new site,” he said. “A lot of people might think that this monument has been a bad thing, but in my eyes it could actually be a great thing … because it’s a chance for people to open up that dialogue and have those conversations that need to be had.”
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