Comments sought on Columbus statue

By on Monday, August 16th, 2021 in Columbia Basin News More Top Stories

WALLA WALLA – The Walla Walla County Board of Commissioners invites public comment via email or mail regarding the statue of Christopher Columbus, which currently stands on the Walla Walla County Courthouse lawn.

In 2020, members of the public request that the commissioners hold a public meeting to consider comments on the statue. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the commissioners decided to hold a public meeting at a later date once in-person could resume.

On Monday, Aug. 9, the board of commissioners discussed having a public meeting on Monday, Aug. 23, but after further discussion and seeing a rise in COVID-19 cases in Walla Walla County, the commissioners decided to receive public comment via email or mail regarding the statue instead.

Comments can be emailed to or mailed to Walla Walla County Commissioners, P.O. Box 1506, Walla Walla, WA 99362. The deadline to submit public comment is Monday, Sept. 13. The comments will then be reviewed by the commissioners.

In June 2020, vandals painted the words “Genocide” and “Stolen Land” on the more than century old statue. As for Columbus, the historical figure has been criticized for his treatment and colonization of the Indigenous communities he encountered. The statue was erected by the Italian community and given as a gift to the city of Walla Walla. It was dedicated on October 12, 1911.