An advisory panel at the Florida State University has recommended the removal of a statue of Francis Eppes from a high profile location in front of the Westcott Building on campus, near one of the main entrances.
The same panel has also recommended that a building in the College of Criminology and Criminal Justice strike the name “Eppes” from Eppes Hall.
Eppes is mostly known as being the grandson of President Thomas Jefferson. He served as mayor in Tallahassee in the 1850s and was reportedly instrumental in offering up the land that hosted the State Seminary West of the Suwannee River which later became FSU.
But the most notable fact to FSU students is that he owned over 50 slaves.
Don Price, Sexton of Greenwood Cemetery, has informally offered to install the contentious statue next to Eppes’ actual grave, which is in the City-owned cemetery by the Orlando Wetlands. The cemetery is also home to the infamous Johnny Reb Confederate statue which was relocated there after being removed from Lake Eola last summer.
Price hosts regular tours of the cemetery, using it as an impromptu, outdoor history museum for tour groups, journalists, and curious locals. Click HERE to learn more about the free Moonlight Walking Tour series or to RSVP for an upcoming event.
Despite the offer, the statue is likely to stay on FSU’s campus, just somewhere out of the way.