Mayor names Confederate monument review commission

Commission to review Confederate monuments in Baltimore over six months, report to mayor.

Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake announced appointments Friday to a special commission tapped to review Baltimore's Confederate monuments over the next six months.

The seven-member commission — which will meet for the first of four meetings on Sept. 17 — will review the way other cities have dealt with Confederate-theme statues and historical tributes, and issue recommendations to the mayor.

The appointees include four members from the Commission for Historical and Architectural Preservation and three members from the Public Arts Commission. The chairman will be Aaron Bryant, who also serves as the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation curator of photography at National Museum of African American History and Culture.

"It is important that we recognize the delicate balance between respecting history and being offensive," Rawlings-Blake said in a statement. "I believe that by bringing together representatives from the art community and historians, and gathering public testimony, we have a better chance of understanding the importance of historic monuments — not only the significance they have in our history, but the role they should play in our future."

The commission will meet at the city's Department of Planning, 417 E. Fayette St. Public testimony will be accepted at 5 p.m. Dec. 15.

ywenger@baltsun.com

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