- Feb 5, 2017
As in the rest of the country, things are starting to heat up in America’s oldest city when it comes to Confederate monuments. Similar to Lt. General Ambrose P. Hill’s monument and gravesite covere…
William W. Loring during the Mexican War. (Cowan’s Auctions)
On June 22, St. Augustine’s city commission decided after a 3-2 vote to remove a memorial dedicated to fallen Confederate soldiers located in St. Augustine’s Plaza de la Constitución since 1879. Hundreds gathered eight days before and called for the monument’s removal because of its ties to the Confederacy. During the 12-hour meeting, the commissioners discussed how to best handle its relocation. The city manager provided a written proposal. Notably left out of the commission’s discussion was the nearby Loring Memorial, which is maintained by the University of Florida and owned but the state. However, on June 25, the University of Florida announced it’s working to remove it as well.
Loring’s remains, unlike A.P. Hill’s, are deposited under the monument instead of inside of it. The obelisk marking his grave is located in a park situated on the west side of the Governor’s House Cultural Center. Most secondary accounts state that Loring was cremated before his burial. (I haven’t found any reliable primary source evidence to confirm this.)
Relocation of the Loring Memorial came up as a topic of discussion once before in 2018. Some called for the removal of both the obelisk and Loring’s body, while one professor from Flagler College recommended leaving Loring’s remains where they were and marking the gravesite with a simple headstone. When a direct descendant of General Loring living in Boston, Massachusetts, caught wind of this attempt, he sent a letter opposing the relocation.