Alabama historian to speak about Confederate monuments during UHV History Day
As protests and conversations continue throughout the country about the removal of Confederate monuments, an Alabama professor is studying how more were removed in 2020 than any previous year.
The Victoria community can learn more about the removal of the monuments during the second annual UHV History Day on April 23, hosted by the UHV history program. Hilary N. Green, an associate professor of history at the University of Alabama and a Vann Professor of Ethics in Society, will be the keynote speaker and will deliver the lecture “Confederate Monument Removals: Contextualizing the Post-George Floyd Moment,” at 6 p.m. through Microsoft Teams. There will be a question-and-answer portion after the lecture. The event is free and open to the public, and no pre-registration is required. The link to attend the event will be posted on the UHV history program web page.
“The UHV history program is honored to have Dr. Hilary N. Green speak at our second annual lecture series,” said Laura Mammina, UHV assistant professor of history. “Dr. Green is a distinguished historian of the Civil War and Reconstruction-era United States. In addition, she has done groundbreaking work on the history of Confederate monuments and monument removals. Her talk is sure to be enlightening and engaging for UHV students, faculty and staff as well as the wider Victoria and Katy communities.”
For the inaugural event in 2020, the community was invited to a lecture featuring a Columbia University history professor who wrote a nonfiction book about a Victoria resident born into slavery who later became a successful Mexican entrepreneur. This year, the UHV history faculty wanted to feature another historical topic of interest to the community, said Joseph Locke, associate professor of history.
“While most of our History Day events are for UHV students, our community lectures are an opportunity for more people to come out and learn about important topics of discussion,” Locke said. “We invited Dr. Green to provide more context into the broader movement of the removal of Confederate monuments because the topic is on the minds of people in the community.”
Green is an associate professor of history in the department of Gender and Race Studies and American Studies at the University of Alabama. She is on leave at the university and is working at Davidson College in North Carolina for the 2020-2021 academic year as a Vann Professor of Ethics in Society and is working with the faculty and members of the college’s Commission on Race and Slavery.
Green has a bachelor’s degree in history with minors in Africana studies and pre-healing arts from Franklin and Marshall College. She also has a master’s degree in history from Tufts University and a doctorate in history from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Her research and teaching interests include the intersections of race, class and gender in African American history, the American Civil War, Reconstruction, Civil War memory, the U.S. South, 19th century America and the Black Atlantic.
She is the author of “Educational Reconstruction: African American Schools in the Urban South, 1865-1890” as well as articles, book reviews, encyclopedia entries, and chapters in several Civil War and history books. She is working on a book examining how African Americans remembered and commemorated the Civil War.
Green’s lecture will focus on her current project tracking the removals of Confederate monuments as well as the history of the removal of these monuments, such as mapping of where these removals are taking place, the legal process of getting the monuments removed, and the pace of the removals.
She began this project in 2020 after there was a push to remove monuments after the “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, Virginia. However, the pace of the removals accelerated after the death of George Floyd in May. The removals were so swift that the reporting of how many monuments being taken down were significantly undercounted. Outside of the U.S., there were efforts in other countries to remove statues of figures involved in the slave trade and colonialism.
“This is a global movement, and everyone is connecting this action to George Floyd’s death and injustice,” Green said. “We are still seeing these monuments come down and communities grappling with these monuments, and we are seeing so many differences in the landscape of these communities. These monuments went up at the beginning of the 1900s, and we are now seeing them removed just as fast.”
History Day was created to promote the history program at the university and help students understand the type of career fields, research and projects that are possible with a history degree. To attend the “Confederate Monument Removals: Contextualizing the Post-George Floyd Moment,” lecture or to learn more about the UHV history program, go to www.uhv.edu/arts-and-sciences/undergraduate-programs/history.
The University of Houston-Victoria, located in the heart of the Coastal Bend region since 1973 in Victoria, Texas, offers courses leading to more than 80 academic programs in the schools of Arts & Sciences; Business Administration; and Education, Health Professions & Human Development. UHV provides face-to-face classes at its Victoria campus, as well as an instructional site in Katy, Texas, and online classes that students can take from anywhere. UHV supports the American Association of State Colleges and Universities Opportunities for All initiative to increase awareness about state colleges and universities and the important role they have in providing a high-quality and accessible education to an increasingly diverse student population, as well as contributing to regional and state economic development.