The mayor’s office ordered the “temporary” relocation of the 7-foot statue at Drake Fountain, the last remaining Columbus statue in Chicago.
On Thursday, July 30, Mayor Lightfoot ordered Chicago’s final monument to Christopher Columbus to be removed from the Far South Side. The 7-foot statue had sat at Drake Fountain on the corner where 92nd Street and Exchange and Chicago avenues meet for more than a century, but now the Mayor’s office has chosen to remove it citing public safety.
“Following public safety concerns over planned demonstrations similar to the one in Grant Park two weeks ago, the city has temporarily relocated the Christopher Columbus statue at Drake Fountain in the South Chicago neighborhood until further notice,” the mayor’s office said in a statement. “This temporary relocation is part of an effort to prevent individuals from pulling down statues in an extremely dangerous manner, which has created unsafe situations for protestors and police, as well as residents of the surrounding community.”
The announcement comes shortly after the Mayor had the Columbus statues in Grant Park and Little Italy removed on Friday, July 24. Crews were seen removing the Grant Park statue in the early hours of Friday morning following the protests near Lightfoot’s Logan Square residence on the evening of Thursday, July 23. Lightfoot also stated that removing the Columbus statues was a step towards developing “a framework for creating a public dialogue to determine how we elevate our city’s history and diversity.”
[Featured image: DMercer (@53viroqua) via Twitter]