GEORGETOWN, Texas (KXAN) — Williamson County commissioners decided Tuesday not to install a plaque near a Confederate monument on the courthouse grounds.
Last year marked the 100th anniversary of the statue’s unveiling on the south side of the old Williamson County Courthouse. It shows a man standing with a gun on a pedestal, and the base has “No braver patriots ever fought, no braver deeds were ever wrought” on the base. Nearby, a plaque refers to African Americans as “pioneer settlers” instead of slaves.
An anti-racism group called Courageous Conversations started the push to add another plaque to place near the statue and provide more historical context regarding slavery and the Civil War. They petitioned the Commissioners Court almost exactly a year ago, but the commissioners decided not to vote on it because they didn’t have enough time to review the application before a state deadline. Courageous Conversations reapplied for the marker this year.
The county commissioners voted 4-1 Tuesday against the plaque, which needs their permission to be installed but ultimately must be approved by the Texas Historical Commission. The commissioners expressed a desire to discuss the issue more, or even consider erecting a civil rights statue. Numerous people against and for the plaque attended the meeting to voice their opinion on the matter.