The Cherokee Triangle Architectural Review Committee will tentatively host a public hearing on Wednesday, Jan. 23 — the next step in the process to possibly remove and relocate the controversial John Breckinridge Castleman statue.
The committee typically meets at 4:30 p.m. at the Metro Development Center, 444 S. Fifth St. However, no time or location was given in a Thursday afternoon news release from Mayor Greg Fischer’s office.
Because the Castleman statue is located in the Cherokee Triangle Preservation District, the mayor’s office must receive a certificate of appropriateness from the review committee to move the statue. The decision can be appealed to the Landmarks Commission.
The statue has been defaced multiple times as some have protested its display. Castleman has been praised for contributions to Louisville but also has drawn derision for fighting in the Confederate Army.
Following seven public hearings and a review of hundreds of public comments, the Public Art and Monuments Advisory Committee found earlier this year that monuments and artworks that symbolize racist or bigoted ideology have no place in Louisville. Fischer subsequently announced plans to move the Castleman statue, as well as a statue of anti-immigrant newspaper publisher George Dennison Prentice.
The Prentice statue was moved from outside the Louisville Free Public Library’s main branch downtown to a city storage facility on Lexington Road earlier this month.
The city was in discussions with Cave Hill Cemetery about taking the statues, but Cave Hill’s board declined to take the Prentice statue. A request for comment from Cave Hill went unreturned.
“Mr. Prentice used his position as founder and long-time editor of the Louisville Journal to advocate an anti-Catholic, anti-immigrant message that led to the 1855 Bloody Monday riot where at least 22 people were killed,” Fischer said in a news release on Dec. 10. “His statue is especially inappropriate outside the library, a place that encourages education, inclusiveness
Talks between the city and Cave Hill regarding the fate of the Castleman statue are ongoing, according to the Dec. 27 news release from the mayor’s office.
It is unclear what, if anything, will replace the Prentice and Castleman statues.