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Battle lines drawn over Union monument at Olustee

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Updated: 11/06/2013 7:02 pm
OLUSTEE, Fla. -- A new battle is brewing between Yankees and Rebels over our local history and it's happening right in our own backyard.

Union and Confederate troops clashed at the Battle of Olustee on the now hallowed ground outside of Lake City.

It marked the only major civil war battle fought on Florida soil.

As passionate re-enactors prepare to play out the deadly exchange for its 150th anniversary in February, there's a new fight between the two factions.

"If you have an Iraq war monument, you don't want to put a Muslim/jihadist monument right in front of it," said Jim Shillinglaw with the Sons of Confederate Veterans.

That's how some are comparing a proposal to place a monument memorializing Union soldiers at the state park.

Florida's Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War charge there are three Confederate monuments and no Union memorial at Olustee.

Their mission states, "As Sons of Union Veterans we seek to balance the cultural representation by placing a monument there.”

They recently won state approval to build their own structure in what confederate legacies call rebel territory.

Specifically in front of a massive Confederate monument built in 1912.

"It's really a thumb in the face of the other monument and the people who put it there," said Shillinglaw.

So the Sons of Confederate Veterans are on the attack -- circulating a statewide petition -- soon to invade the Florida Parks and Recreation Department in Tallahassee.

"It'd be a clash because people are passionate about their ancestors and their history.

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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of Action News Jacksonville

grandma12 - 11/25/2013 7:14 PM
0 Votes
Please read the article from the Tampa Bay Times entitled, "Florida's one-sided Civil War Battlefield" written by Mike Pride,dated Sunday,April 1, 2012. After reading, no doubt will remain with most readers that Mr. Pride has alternative motives in his opinions & goals. He is one of the driving forces behind the attempt to have another Union monument erected in front of a long standing marker honoring Confederate soldiers.

jbendy - 11/9/2013 10:12 AM
2 Votes
Nothing wrong with putting up a monument, but it is the height of rudeness to put it directly in front of another. Put it in line beside the others and it will be fine. Dang Yankees never had no manners.

Pat Hines - 11/9/2013 8:17 AM
2 Votes
The Yankee murderers killed over 500,000 of my people. Any memorial to them is no different than having a memorial to any other serial killer in the last 50 years. Even the idea of honoring the thugs that came into our land disgusts me.

Chuck - 11/7/2013 10:59 AM
0 Votes
The article is not correct. The monument that is already there has both Union and Confederate Memorials already on it

viejo - 11/6/2013 11:07 PM
0 Votes
Lookout Mountain and Chickamauga Battlefield both have monuments to units fighting for both sides.

KenW1408 - 11/6/2013 6:27 PM
0 Votes
There is a memorial there in the cemetery where the Union men were buried. There a large cross there too the Union men who died there.

chantel66 - 11/6/2013 6:09 PM
2 Votes
Where can I go to sign the petition to get a Union memorial there too? Both sides died there, and their sacrifices should be recognized. If the south wants to keep fighting the war, then fight fair and have both sides involved.
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