Mississippi museum vandalized

Published 9:25 pm Tuesday, January 23, 2024

An act of vandalism at the Vicksburg Civil War Museum didn’t do any significant damage to the building but has left owner Charles Pendleton discouraged.

“Somebody painted graffiti on the side of the building (overnight),” Pendleton explained Tuesday, “the word ‘liars.’”

Pendleton said his best guess for the motivation behind the act is simply the nerves that are sometimes touched when people view certain Civil War exhibits, namely the various letters of secession from states, many of which touch heavily on the issue of slavery.

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“I know there are a few people that come through here and they get upset when they read the secession letters,” he said. “They feel like I wrote them, I guess, and I’m lying on the south or lying on the Confederates or something.”

Pendleton said the graffiti itself has already been painted over and isn’t a “big deal” in the grand scheme of things but added that he is dismayed by those who see the exhibits as anything other than the preservation of history and a means by which to not repeat past mistakes.

“The problem is, it is kind of spirit-crushing, because the locals have really embraced this place,” he said. “A lot of my customers come in and tell me some local person recommended this place. So, you hate to take away from that, because that represents that we are moving forward and progressing.”

Pendleton said he filed a police report with the Vicksburg Police Department and was told another Civil War-related monument was also vandalized.

“They said that down the hill at the Illinois monument, someone wrote ‘rebel forever’ or something like that,” he said. “Junk like this happens and we take a step back.”

Anyone with any information regarding the vandalism is encouraged to report it to the Vicksburg Police Department at 601-636-2511.