Beauvoir visitors want to see statues preserved

Beauvoir visitors want to see statues preserved

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - It's been just days since Beauvoir laid out the red carpet for cities to bring their rejected Confederate monuments.

Despite not getting a response, Beauvoir officials are motivated by what they call overwhelming public support. They believe that the offer is a solution that can help cool the heated demonstrations and calm the anger.

Natalia Ilyushina may be from Moscow, but she's in love with Southern culture. She doesn't like what's happening to its monuments.

"It's history, and no matter what opinion you have on it, you don't have right to just defile such an important piece of history even though it's confederacy history," Ilyushina. "People died in battles and we have to cherish the memory of them and we have to respect it."

After a visit with friends, she agrees that Beauvoir is the place for the monuments to be.

"It will really belong here. It would be in the right place, and people really cherish it [Confederate history] here."

Richard Hamilton is from Chicago, and has an outsider's perspective. The problem, he says, is complex with legitimate concerns on all sides.

"They should be in safe keeping. I don't think it's a good idea to destroy them, though. I think that's wrong. I think that's going to create further problems," said Hamilton.

It's a good move for economic reasons, says Beauvoir director Tom Payne, but it's a solution that simply makes sense for people on either side of the issue.

"I think they both would be satisfied if they were taken out of the public eye and put it in a location where they can be properly interpreted, and in a museum where anybody who wants to come see them, can come see them," said Payne. "We want to help and be part of the solution. We don't want to see all this divisive and violence in the community."

Payne says he has no specific time frame to receive responses, and that whenever anyone is ready to discuss a transfer of the monuments, Beauvoir will be ready.

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