Another lawsuit brought by Virginia resident William C. Gregory, identified as the great-grandson of two parties and signatories to the 1890 deed, argued that removal of the statue also violates the deed, in which Virginia, having been transferred the land the statue sits on, agreed to “faithfully guard and affectionately protect it.”
He claimed that as an heir, he has the legal right to compel Virginia to keep the Lee monument where it is.
Northam hailed the removal of what he called “Virginia’s largest monument to the Confederate insurrection,” and called it “an important step in showing who we are and what we value as a Commonwealth.”
The statue will be placed in secure storage at a state-owned facility until a decision is made on its further disposition, officials said.
The 40-foot granite pedestal the Lee statue sits on will remain in place during a community-driven effort to “reimagine” Monument Avenue, officials said.