Confederate soldier monument

Locals walk near the Confederate soldier monument at Courthouse on the Square in February 2018.

Denton County commissioners on Tuesday are expected to end months of silence in addressing the divisive Confederate soldier monument that stands in downtown Denton.

On the Commissioners Court’s agenda is a presentation and update on plans to address the many concerns about the monument.

It will be the first time Denton County Judge Andy Eads’ court has taken up the issue publicly since Eads took office eight months ago.

Eads said in a text message Friday that commissioners will not take any action on the monument this Tuesday. He said Tuesday will consist only of a presentation to identify which steps the county should take next after a citizen committee recommended adding a plaque with historical context about the racism that led to the monument’s construction in the first place.

“The agenda item is for presenting purposes only and official actions will be at future meetings,” Eads wrote Friday.

The committee’s recommendation was made in February 2018, when Eads’ predecessor Mary Horn was in office. More than a year later, the unresolved debate about the Confederate monument’s future still looms over the Eads court.

The Denton Record-Chronicle revealed earlier this summer that Horn instructed the county’s historical commission to apply for a Texas Historical Commission marker, which would have ended all discussion about removing the Confederate monument altogether.

The state rejected the county’s application for multiple reasons. That rejection came in late January, just after Eads took office on Jan. 1.

That the county applied for and was rejected for the marker was a surprise to many people on the committee that decided in 2018 to add historical context to the monument.

Separately, a group is putting into motion a plan to create a public memorial to pay tribute to the victims of lynching in Denton County. Called the Denton County Community Remembrance Project, the grassroots effort to join the Legacy Museum and National Memorial to Peace and Justice is gaining momentum.

Denton City Council member Deb Armintor last Tuesday asked the council to adopt a resolution supporting the placement of the lynching memorial on the downtown Square, also the site of the Confederate soldier monument.

Denton County commissioners will meet at 9 a.m. Tuesday inside the second-floor courtroom at 110 W. Hickory St. in Denton.

DALTON LAFERNEY can be reached at 940-566-6882 and via Twitter at @daltonlaferney.

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