Newark, NJ to replace Columbus statue with Tubman monument in 2022
NEWARK — As part of the city's celebration of Juneteenth, Mayor Ras Baraka announced the selection of a winning design for a planned monument in Washington Park honoring abolitionist Harriet Tubman, which will replace a statue of Christopher Columbus that was removed in the summer of 2020.
Artist Nina Cooke John's concept, called "Shadow of a Face," will be installed during the summer of 2022, according to a release from the mayor's office Thursday.
The announcement came on the same day that President Joe Biden signed into law Juneteenth as a federal holiday. Gov. Phil Murphy designated it a state holiday for New Jersey a year ago.
The occasion commemorates June 19, 1865, when troops arrived at Galveston, Texas with word that the Civil War was over, and that enslaved people liberated by the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863 were officially free.
Newark's Columbus statue was taken down last June in the midst of a reckoning over the explorer's legacy across the United States.