A 100-foot monument to former U.S. vice president and slavery advocate John C. Calhoun towers over a downtown square Tuesday, June 23, 2020, in Charleston, S.C.
A 100-foot monument to former U.S. vice president and slavery advocate John C. Calhoun towers over a downtown square Tuesday, June 23, 2020, in Charleston, S.C.

The U.S. city of Charleston, South Carolina has removed a statue of U.S. vice president and slavery advocate John C. Calhoun from a prominent downtown square.

The statue started coming down just before 1 a.m. local time Wednesday after the Charleston City Council voted Tuesday night to have it removed.

Several hundred people watched workers using cranes bring down the statue from its 30-meter monument in Marion Square.

The statue of Confederate Gen. Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson stands at the Manassas Battlefield Park in Virginia. (Photo: Diaa Bekheet). Jackson was a commander in the First Battle of Bull Run, which marked the first major land battle of the Civil War.
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In the wake of protests and unrest, city council members voted to remove the statue and place it permanently at “an appropriate site where it will be protected and preserved.”

The vote followed a meeting during which 41 members of the public spoke, both in favor and against removal of the statue.  Local media report demonstrations representing both sides of the issue took place Monday at the site of the statue.

John C. Calhoun was a U.S. vice president under John Quincy Adams and Andrew Jackson from 1825 to 1832 and served in Congress. He was a vocal proponent of slavery.