The following was sent to the Cape Girardeau Mayor and Council concerning the potential removal of the CSA Memorial on behalf of the Missouri Society Membership on July 02, 2020. The letter was requested of the Society Commander by local friends of the South in the Cape Girardeau community .
On Jul 2, 2020
Honorable Mayor and Council members,
On behalf of the Executive Leadership and the General Membership throughout the great State of Missouri of the Missouri Society, Military Order of the Stars and Bars we would offer our total and complete opposition to the proposed removal of the Confederate Monument in Cape Girardeau. The fraternal Military Order of the Stars & Bars, a non-profit 501(c) 3, non-political educational, historical, patriotic, and heritage group continues its dedication to the preservation of Southern history and remains the only heritage organization actually founded by Confederate veterans. Monuments to the soldiers of the Confederacy were constructed throughout the United States to recognize and remember the common soldier from that city, county, or state that never came home.
The United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC) were and are female descendants of soldiers who served during the war. In that consideration when these monuments were conceived they had husbands, sons, brothers, uncles, fathers, grandfathers, or great grandfathers who were killed in battle and never made it home. Unfortunately hundreds of thousands of these soldiers lay in unmarked graves, many of them mass graves, throughout the South including many in the great State of Missouri. I personally have an ancestor who rests in a mass grave in Louisiana.
The funds for these monuments were typically raised by the ladies of the UDC and at times local and state governments allocated expenditures to assist with these projects. At completion nearly all of them were deeded to the local city, county or state government with the intention that they would exist in perpetuity and their care and upkeep would be certain.
Though many may claim the motivations for these monuments was to intimidate minority communities, some simple research refutes that with a little effort in most cases. Prior to making a judgement responsible parties should review their local papers at the time of the dedication of these monuments. Take the words of and actions of the people who actually supported and dedicated these monuments to speculate their intent, not the words of modern social change supporters.
Please consider in the case of this monument around 80 years had passed since the War Between the States. Many of the sons of the South had gone to war as US Soldiers in the Spanish-American War and World War I. The country was more united in purpose than perhaps any time since the War Between the States. Our culture was one who looked to honor all the soldiers who had sacrificed for their beliefs, including the common Confederate soldier. A large contingent of our current membership are veterans of service to our country in the various military branches. If we as a modern culture engage in desecration and destruction of the monuments of our ancestors we will move further from unity of purpose and closer to individualism and mob rule.
Thank you for your consideration. Respectfully submitted,
Jon E. Trent
Missouri Society, Military Order of the Stars and Bars