By JOHN MCBRYDE
A complaint has been filed with the Tennessee Historical Commission against the city of Franklin over what the complaint says was the removal of six Civil War markers by employees of the city a few months ago.
Nashville attorney Doug Jones filed the complaint Aug. 13 on behalf of the Tennessee Division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans, saying the six markers designated the spot where six Confederate generals were killed during the Battle of Franklin on Nov. 30, 1864.
“There were six markers where Confederate generals fell during the battle that were installed in the ’90s,” Jones said. “Each of the markers had the general’s name on them.
“Back in late May to early June, the city went around and yanked them all up. They didn’t give any notice, didn’t tell anybody, and we filed a complaint with the Historical Commission.”
Franklin City Administrator Eric Stuckey said that the city went through the proper channels to have the markers removed.
“These posts were removed within the past year after extensive study by the City’s Civil War Historical Commission (previously called the Battlefield Preservation Commission (BPC),” Stuckey said in an email to the Home Page. “Their removal was part of a broader effort by the Commission to review a wide variety of signage that had been placed over time with a goal of providing the public with the best, most accurate, and informative markers/signage about Franklin’s Civil War history. The removal of the posts was reviewed and approved by the State of Tennessee Historic Preservation Officer (SHPO) Patrick McIntyre, who said the markers did not fall under the Heritage Protection Act.”
On another matter, Jones and the city of Franklin have been in a stalemate for the past several months over a claim by the United Daughters of the Confederacy that it owns the land where the Confederate soldier statue known as “Chip” stands on the town square. Jones represents the UDC in that case, which came to light when a local historian and three pastors proposed placing historical markers recognizing lives of enslaved people during the Civil War era.
The case is still tied up in court after the city of Franklin filed a lawsuit against the UDC to lay its claim of ownership.
In the recent complaint, the locations of each marker are listed:
Gen. Gist, 1214 Columbia Ave.
Gen. Carter, 1224 Columbia Ave.
Gen. Cleburne, Cleburne Street at the park entrance
Gen. Adams, 1205 Columbia Ave., also at park entrance
Gen. Strahl, 1148 Columbia Ave., in front of the old Florist Shop
Gen. Granbury, 1111 Columbia Ave.