Donna Deegan says no removal plans for remaining Confederate markers
Crowds cheer crews who removed a Confederate statue at Springfield Park in Jacksonville Wednesday. Photo by Drew Dixon

'Mayor Deegan is open to eventually placing them in a museum or another location that makes sense and she is willing to have that conversation with the community and City Council.'

Now that the hoopla has started to die down this week over the removal of two Confederate statues at Jacksonville’s Springfield Park, Mayor Donna Deegan must decide what to do with them while there are promises the artwork will not be destroyed.

Two statues, one that was on top of a pavilion and another under the pavilion at the park off Jacksonville’s Main Street, were abruptly removed by construction crews early Wednesday. While a small crowd of about three dozen people cheered the removal of the monuments of “Florida’s Tribute to Women of the Confederacy,” some of Jacksonville’s Republican political leaders derided Deegan, a Democrat, for ordering the removal of the statues unilaterally without City Council approval.

She used donated, private money to pay for the work that cost an estimated $187,000.

Still, after being hoisted by crane from their pedestals, the statues were loaded onto a wooden pallet, placed on a flat-bed truck and driven away from the park, which was formerly named Confederate Park before the moniker changed in 2020 to reflect one of Jacksonville’s oldest historic neighborhoods known as Springfield.

Chief Communications Officer for the city of Jacksonville, Phillip Perry, said in an email Friday that the statues are being stored safely.

“The statues are in a secure city-owned warehouse. For security reasons, we are not publicizing the exact location,” Perry said.

As far as the ultimate future location of the statues, Perry said, “No decisions have been made from here.”

Whatever happens to the Springfield Park Confederate statues, Perry said, “Mayor Deegan is open to eventually placing them in a museum or another location that makes sense and she is willing to have that conversation with the community and City Council.”

Wednesday’s removal of the Springfield Park Confederate memorial statues mimicked the approach previous Mayor Lenny Curry, a Republican, took in 2020 when he removed a Confederate monument in what was then known as Hemming Plaza, now named James Weldon Johnson Park, across the street from Jacksonville City Hall. That was removed by crews overnight.

While James Weldon Johnson and Springfield Park monuments were the highest profile Confederate memorials in Jacksonville, there are other Confederate memorials that remain on public land in Jacksonville. Most notably, there are multiple Confederate memorials in what’s known as the Old City Cemetery off Union Street, only a few blocks from Springfield Park.

The Republican Party of Duval County said in an X social media post, formerly known as Twitter, that the “radical left” will go beyond Confederate monuments and will target city historic statutes such as Andrew Jackson’s statue near the riverfront in downtown. Jackson is the namesake of the city.

Deegan herself said in a Thursday interview with Action News Jax CBS47/Fox 30 television that those claims are unfounded. She went further to say she has no plans to address any other Confederate markers in the city.

“People will always press something to the point of the ridiculous I think to make a point,” said Deegan in the TV interview.

Perry said any additional considerations for any remaining Confederate monuments and markers simply aren’t on the radar of the Mayor’s Office.

“No decisions yet but she is open and willing to have the community discussion,” Perry said.

In the Action News report, Deegan acknowledged she campaigned on removing the Springfield Park statues before she was elected in May. And that’s the only Confederate marker she had ever targeted.

“I think this is the one we’ve been vastly focused on. If Council or the community wants to look at other things, I’m happy to do that, but this is really where our full focus has been,” Deegan said.


Editor’s note: Drew Dixon’s spouse is an employee of Mayor Deegan’s administration.

Drew Dixon

Drew Dixon is a journalist of 40 years who has reported in print and broadcast throughout Florida, starting in Ohio in the 1980s. He is also an adjunct professor of philosophy and ethics at three colleges, Jacksonville University, University of North Florida and Florida State College at Jacksonville. You can reach him at [email protected].


  • Don't Say FLA

    December 29, 2023 at 12:43 pm

    Please don’t erase history. Keeping history around makes it harder for people to repeat the mistaken parts of it.

    Ya think maybe if some Nazi stuff has been kept around in Israel, that Israel would now be repeating with Palestinians what the Nazis did to the Jews?

    Do poor whites (MAGGAS) wish to become enslaved people in another 40 or 50 years? If no, maybe let’s keep the reminders about them being the plantation owners a while back and maybe the USA majority population will remember how bad enslavement was.

    And don’t even get me started on the Confederate Battle Flag being near-banned. End result of that was insurrectionits hijacked the USA flag!

    Give the Hee Haw Donkey, Marjorie Taylor Green, and her people their flag back so they sit at home on the couch swilling beer as usual but with rebel flag proudly flying outside their trailer which keeps them happy enough and this keeps their poo art off the walls of the Capitol building

    • Impeach Biden

      December 29, 2023 at 3:31 pm

      Nazi stuff in Israel? Really? Are you aware that Israel was created after the end of Naziism? Are you also aware that just outside of Munich is the old concentration camp Dachau? The German’s keep it there as a reminder. Funny that you think all MAGA’s Live in trailer parks and swill beer. Where I live I see lots of Trump / MAGA flags flying in some of the wealthiest neighborhoods. Now turn on COPS and see some of the Democrat finest at work.🤣

      • Dont Say FLA

        January 5, 2024 at 3:10 pm

        And the German’s haven’t repeated their Nazi shit, have they?

        The Germans did it to the Jews. The British stole land from Palestinians and made Israel.

        And now Israel is doing to the Palestinians the very same thing the Germans did to them.

        It’s what happens when history is erased. It’s why I advocate for keeping loser monuments and loser flags around. Just update their historical marker signage to say “Remember, kids, don’t be like these losers”

  • the truth

    December 29, 2023 at 11:03 pm

    Deegan broke the law when she removed the statues. she did not follow the guidelines from the jacksonville historical commission. they will be going back to confederate park. count on it

    • Phil Morton

      December 30, 2023 at 6:28 am

      No laws were broken. The statues are gone, the Confederacy has been dead for more than 150 years and neither it nor the statues will ever return.

      • Dont Say FLA

        January 5, 2024 at 3:13 pm

        No Phil, the Confederacy has not been dead for more than 150 years. It beat Hillary Clinton for President in 2016, attempted to defeat the peaceful transfer of power from them back to normal people in 2020, and they’re presently at it again, running their guy again for President, while all other Presidential wannabees from the party of today’s CSA, the G0P, parrot the leading guy with their nazi sounding words and actions.

  • the Truth

    December 30, 2023 at 3:31 pm

    Deegan is for sure a one term Mayor. The Republicans need to find a great candidate. Maybe Nick Howland

  • the Truth

    December 30, 2023 at 7:26 pm

    Nick Howland, can you file legislation to make the Mayor put the statues back, and lets see how the Republicans vote on it???

    • MH/Duuuval

      January 3, 2024 at 9:32 pm

      Howlin’ only got elected to the Council because he ran for an at-large seat as an R. He was soundly defeated when he ran for a district seat on the school board, where he ran a campaign that showed him to be both ignorant and self-serving.

  • Seber Nerwsome III

    January 3, 2024 at 10:44 pm

    read HB395 and SB1122, the protection of historical monuments nd memorials, the two statues and the hemming monument will be going back up when the bill passes

    • MH/Duuuval

      January 6, 2024 at 11:47 am

      When, not if — and even so a court challenge is inevitable if the MAGAmites try to make this law retroactive.

Comments are closed.


Florida Politics is a statewide, new media platform covering campaigns, elections, government, policy, and lobbying in Florida. This platform and all of its content are owned by Extensive Enterprises Media.

Publisher: Peter Schorsch @PeterSchorschFL

Contributors & reporters: Phil Ammann, Drew Dixon, Roseanne Dunkelberger, A.G. Gancarski, Anne Geggis, Ryan Nicol, Jacob Ogles, Cole Pepper, Gray Rohrer, Jesse Scheckner, Christine Sexton, Drew Wilson, and Mike Wright.

Email: [email protected]
Twitter: @PeterSchorschFL
Phone: (727) 642-3162
Address: 204 37th Avenue North #182
St. Petersburg, Florida 33704