Pittsburgh Arts Commission votes to remove controversial Stephen Foster memorial

Pittsburgh Arts Commission votes to remove controversial Stephen Foster memorial

In a unanimous ruling, the Pittsburgh Art Commission voted to remove the controversial statue honoring the 19th century songwriter and Pittsburgh native from Schenley Plaza in Oakland Wednesday afternoon. 


The statue, erected in 1900, honors Foster, who is often considered the father of American music and penned classics like “Camptown Races” and “Oh, Susanna.” However, the statue’s content, including a proper looking Foster sitting above a barefoot, rag-wearing African American man plucking a banjo, draws criticism for its similarities to racist minstrel show stereotypes.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017/Author: Stephen Caruso
Categories: Pittsburgh
Public calls for the removal of controversial Stephen Foster statue in Pittsburgh

Public calls for the removal of controversial Stephen Foster statue in Pittsburgh

Public commenters at a Pittsburgh Art Commission hearing Wednesday overwhelmingly called for the removal of the controversial Stephen Foster statue from public property, calling it racist and demeaning to black culture.

The Commission scheduled a hearing to gather information and to hear from the public about the controversial statue that was built in 1900 depicting Stephen Foster, a Pittsburgh-born songwriter known for his work with minstrel music, standing over a barefoot black slave playing a banjo. 

Wednesday, October 4, 2017/Author: Alanna Koll
Categories: Pittsburgh
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