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House To Vote On Moving Frederick Douglass Statue To U.S. Capitol

A statue of famed abolitionist Frederick Douglass has forlornly stood in the lobby of a D.C. government building since 2007, but it may soon be making its way to the U.S. Capitol.

Today the House of Representatives will vote on a measure that would authorize the move of Douglass' statue to the Capitol's Emancipation Hall, where it would join statues of prominent historical figures submitted by the 50 states.

The Douglass statue—along with a second statue of Pierre L'Enfant—was commissioned in 2006, part of the city's fight to gain access to the Capitol's Statuary Hall, where the states are allowed to submit a pair of statues or busts for display. But after years of back-and-forth debate, last year D.C. agreed to a compromise under which it would be allowed to move only one statue.

If the House passes the measure, which was approved by the Senate last week, the Douglass statue would be moved and unveiled on June 19. When that happens, Douglass will be only the fourth African-American to be memorialized with a statue in the U.S. Capitol.


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