Chicago Alderman Raymond Lopez is asking for the public’s help in finding the people responsible for destroying a 90-year-old Abraham Lincoln monument located on the city’s south side on Wednesday.
Lopez, who represents Chicago’s 15th Ward, posted the picture below on his Facebook page Wednesday evening. He states that at some point on Wednesday, one or more persons attacked the five-foot-tall bust of Lincoln, smashing pieces off of it and then setting it on fire.
The Lincoln monument was not an official statue erected or maintained by the city of Chicago. It was privately installed, according to Slate.com.
In 1926, Phil Blomquist erected an inexpensive bust of Abraham Lincoln in front of the Lincoln Gas Station at South Wolcott Avenue and 69th Street in the Englewood section of Chicago’s South Side. At the time, Englewood was Irish, German, and Italian. By the 1970s, it was a mostly African-American neighborhood and had become one of the worst ghettos in the city.
Like the neighborhood it resides in, the Lincoln bust has fallen into disrepair. With no one maintaining it, the bust began to fall victim to the elements. In recent years, there had been talk of restoring the statue, but considering the extensive damage done by the vandals, that may not be possible.
This is exactly what President Donald Trump warned would happen. In his statement to the press earlier this week, he asked whether protesters would stop with demanding the removal of confederate generals. He wondered if our founding fathers would be targeted next, a statement that was met with ridicule by some media members. “So this week it’s Robert E. Lee. I noticed that Stonewall Jackson’s coming down. I wonder, is it George Washington next week? And is it Thomas Jefferson the week after,” the President asked.
He didn’t need to wait a week. His words were proven true the next day, as monuments to the Founding Fathers began to be targeted.
The Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C. was defaced with vandalism within 24 hours. Al Sharpton demanded that funding for the Thomas Jefferson Memorial be pulled. A pastor in Chicago demanded a George Washington statue in a local park be removed because he fought for “white America” and owned slaves.
Acts of vandalism and crimes against property continue nationwide. A confederate soldier monument in Durham County, North Carolina was destroyed by ANTIFA activists, but the ringleader was later arrested when she held a press conference to brag about the crime.
Some may argue that the Lincoln bust in Chicago isn’t on the same level as the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, but the condition of the bust or its status as an official government memorial is irrelevant. It is the legacy of Lincoln that is being attacked.
Here is Alderman Lopez’s statement and appeal for help in finding the vandal or vandals responsible. From his Facebook page:
What an absolute disgraceful act of vandalism. This bust of Abraham Lincoln, erected by Phil Bloomquist on August 31, 1926, was damaged & burned.
Near 69th & Wolcott, if anyone has any information regarding this act, please contact the police or my office immediately.
This was the monument before the vandalism. As you can see, the condition was not good to begin with. Even so, many local residents hoped for a restoration.
Here is the monument after the vandalism.
No suspects have yet been identified in the crime.
What do you think of the attack on the Lincoln monument in Chicago? Let us know in the comments, and in addition, share this on social media.