Leader of Selma Group that Owns Jefferson Davis Memorial Chair Speaks Out about Its Theft
The theft of a Confederate monument stolen from a Selma cemetery is making headlines across the country. Now the leader of the group that owns the Jefferson Davis Memorial Chair is speaking out to Alabama News Network.
“It’s irreplaceable. It’s just like any other art, it’s priceless. I mean what kind of a price do you put on the Mona Lisa or a Picasso?” Pat Godwin, the president of the United Daughters of the Confederacy Selma Chapter 53, said.
The Jefferson Davis Memorial Chair has been one of the points of interest for people who visit Confederate Memorial Circle in Old Live Oak Cemetery in Selma. The chair went missing last month.
“The chair was put here in 1893. It was put here in honor of President Davis, to honor him for his two visits to Selma and his recognition of Selma for our contribution to the war,” Godwin said.
A group claiming to have the chair sent an email to news outlets Monday saying the chair would only be returned if the United Daughters of the Confederacy displays a banner with a quote from a Black Liberation Army activist at its headquarters in Virginia.
“It had to take at least four to five people to move that chair because of the weight of it, and they had to have a trailer to move it,” Selma Police Chief Kenta Fulford said.
“Every news organization around is calling about this,” District Attorney Michael Jackson said. “And the reason of course is Selma’s history of the Civil War and Civil Rights. So this group, to get the maximum exposure, picked the right place to get the national exposure they trying to get.”
“Whoever has it, we would appeal to them to bring it back and not compound the crimes they’ve already committed,” Godwin said. “History is very important and to erase it is really a tragedy, especially in a country like the United States of America.”
Godwin says the chair is worth about $500,000.