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Church Decides To Remove Plaque Saying Robert E. Lee Planted A Tree

Robert E. Lee statue (Shutterstock/MGS)Robert E. Lee statue (Shutterstock/MGS)

A New York church decided to remove a plaque attached to a tree outside the church, which said that Gen. Robert E. Lee had planted the tree.

Long Island’s Episcopal Diocese announced Tuesday that it will remove the plaque next to St. John’s Episcopal Church in Fort Hamilton, N.Y. on Wednesday, according to Newsday.

“I think it is the responsible thing for us to do,” church bishop Lawrence Provenzano told Newsday. “People for whom the Civil War is such a critical moment — and particularly the descendants of former slaves — shouldn’t walk past what they believe is a church building and see a monument to a Confederate general.”

However, while the bishop implied the existence of a monument dedicated to Lee, the plaque merely mentions that Lee planted the tree.

“This tree was planted by General Robert Edward Lee while stationed at Fort Hamilton from 1842 to 1847,” the plaque reads. “The tree has been restored and this tablet placed upon it by the New York chapter United Daughters of the Confederacy. April 1912.”

The tree currently planted is a “descendant” of the original tree planted by Lee, according to Provenzano and an additional plaque. St. John’s Episcopal Church, the church next to which the tree is planted, was closed in 2014.

The Episcopal Diocese’s decision comes after the Charlottesville rally and during a time when Confederate monuments are being removed or felled across the country. (RELATED: Protesters Topple Confederate Statue In North Carolina [VIDEO])

The Daily Caller News Foundation reached out to Provezano and the Diocese, but received no comment in time for publication.

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