In the 1990s, a monument was built to honor Arthur Ashe, legendary tennis player, world champion, author, and humanitarian. Arthur Ashe Monument. But there’s one that still stands, due to its subject being one of the most admired figures in American sports. [3][4], Ashe was born at Richmond's St. Philip Hospital for Negroes on March 10, 1943. The Arthur Ashe monument was dedicated in 1996 to memorialize the Richmond native and counterbalance the string of statues on Memorial Avenue dedicated to … Because by virtue of the statue going there, it let the business people know the city of Richmond was capable of change.”, “I definitely think it’s powerful, but I have no desire for it to be a focus,” said Luchia Ashe, Arthur’s niece, who also spoke at the dedication, “because the whole is more important. The most important news stories of the day, curated by Post editors and delivered every morning. [7][9], DiPasquale met Ashe in 1992, and received permission to design a statue of him. “He couldn’t come to the dedication,” DiPasquale said, “but when he got out of jail, he said, ‘I would like to go see the statue with you.’ He looked at it, he said, ‘This could only happen in America, that a man like Arthur Ashe, being Arthur Ashe, could stand on an avenue with Confederate soldiers who fought to keep him enslaved!’ ”. The Arthur Ashe monument was dedicated in 1996 to honor the Richmond native, who in 1963 became the first black player ever selected for the United States Davis Cup team. Among tallest were the Robert E. Lee Monument, which stands 21 feet tall atop a 40 foot pedestal, and the Davis Memorial, which sits on a 65-foot column. He was well ahead of all the things we’re doing now.”, Wilder told of the time Ashe brought family members to dinner in the main dining room at the governor’s mansion and instructed the younger ones: “I want you to understand something: You’re here sitting in a place where the only way you could come to it was to serve [meals]. Ashe was an athlete, an … The words "White Lives Matter," as well as the letters "WLM," were spray painted on the figure. He explains how the Arthur Ashe statue on Monument Avenue was born. Following his death, Ashe's widow Jeanne Moutoussamy-Ashe approved the studies, and recommended Virginia Heroes Incorporated for funding. [2], On July 1, 2020, amid the George Floyd protests, Mayor Levar Stoney ordered all statues to Confederate generals on city property taken down; as a result, the only statues on Monument Avenue are of Ashe and of Robert E. Lee, the latter on state property. In the letter, she argued that the monument "honors Richmond, Virginia, more than it does its son, his legacy, and his life's work. By signing up you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. The statue of the African American tennis legend has … Nine crayon and pencil studies of Ashe were created before his death in 1993. On July 1, a city-hired crane under “emergency orders” from Mayor Levar Stoney (D) turned up to remove Stonewall Jackson before a crowd mainly pleased. A statue of tennis legend Arthur Ashe in Richmond, Virginia was defaced on Wednesday. The ideals and the changes that my uncle worked for during his life are more important than the monuments. Nearly a century after the original monuments were put in place, the Richmond community approved a statue of Arthur Ashe by Paul DiPasquale to be placed on Monument Avenue. That would be Arthur Ashe, the first Black man to win the US Open, Wimbledon and the Australian Open, who grew up in Richmond. A statue of tennis legend Arthur Ashe in Richmond, Virginia was defaced on Wednesday. The statue's placement lacked a correlation between the tennis star and the Confederate leaders already represented on the Avenue. The only African American man to win Wimbledon, the U.S. Open and the Australian Open stood there in likeness holding a tennis racket high and a book higher, four children attentive toward him in DiPasquale’s rendition. Ashe, who wrote later in his memoir about his determination to refrain from embarrassing any questioner, replied calmly: “Son, you’re from Virginia. Nearly a century after the original monuments were put in place, the Richmond community approved a statue of Arthur Ashe by Paul DiPasquale to be placed on Monument Avenue. [3][8] The monuments, constructed from 1890 to 1929, were likely influenced by the then-popular belief that the Confederacy was just and heroic, an ideology also referred to as the Lost Cause of the Confederacy. “Well, it was rewarding,” Johnnie Ashe said by telephone Wednesday evening. I really do. The family will not request even a temporary removal, Ashe’s nephew, David Harris Jr., told the Associated Press on Friday, leaving the fleeting doubt as another bygone bump in a road that has known greater bumpiness: its outset in the mid-1990s, when the idea of Ashe’s placement on Monument Avenue wreaked wrangling. And he looked across toward Lee’s likeness and said, “As long as that man is up there, the same laws still apply.”, About 1⅓ miles from Lee, Ashe still stood Friday morning on the 77th anniversary of his birth, his goodness retold in a thousand recollections. The sculptor of Arthur Ashe’s statue, and my long-time neighbor, Paul Dipasquale talks to me in his backyard, explaining how the statue came to be nearly the last one standing on Monument Avenue. And as of Friday, the possibility still flickered that, if five other statues wind up cleared as evildoers, there might stand alone the goodness that abounded in Ashe. The message of Monument Avenue is Arthur Ashe stands on Monument Avenue. Ashe was an athlete, an activist and most importantly, a true gentleman whose life on and off the tennis court continues to impact the world, even almost 30 years after his death. The statue became either the first or last depending on your direction, about a third of a mile from the next: Matthew Fontaine Maury, the scientist and Confederate naval officer who contributed much to the country but also advocated repairing the sin of slavery by forcing enslaved human beings off to Brazil. 7/11/2020: The statue of J.E.B. 500 attended the event, and several people raised Confederate flags over the stage. RICHMOND — As the 21st century began, a motley mash of monuments lined gorgeous Monument Avenue here: five Confederate bigwigs and Arthur Ashe, five anti-Americans who lost their largest conflict and one African American who triumphed over so much — the six of them spaced blocks apart from one another so at least they didn’t have to fraternize. The statue depicts tennis player Arthur Ashe, who was born and raised in Richmond. 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