DeKalb Commissioner Ted Terry introduces resolution to remove ‘Indian War’ cannon from Decatur Square

Decatur, GA — The DeKalb County Board of Commissioners will soon consider removing the controversial “Indian War” cannon from the Decatur Square. The resolution was introduced by Commissioner Ted Terry on Sept. 28 and was backed by Commissioner Mereda Davis Johnson.

The board did not make a final decision Tuesday morning about removing the cannon. The resolution was deferred for two weeks, so it can be considered by a committee before the Board of Commissioners votes on the resolution.

The cannon was placed in Decatur in 1906 by the United Daughters of the Confederacy and memorializes the removal of Indigenous peoples following the Creek Indian War of 1836. The war was a consequence of the Indian Removal Act of 1830, which President Andrew Jackson strongly supported, according to a report from the National Park Service. In 1821, Georgia forced the sale of half of the remaining Creek land, including the land that is now the city of Decatur, which was taken by white settlers in a land lottery.

The UDC also installed a confederate monument that was removed in 2020. The Decatur City Commission in December adopted a resolution in support of the cannon’s removal.

The cannon is not publicly owned and is not a monument as defined by state law, according to the resolution. The cannon will be moved to an appropriate storage facility within 90 days.

Members of the community continued to encourage the commissioners to remove the cannon. Some have suggested replacing the cannon with a memorial or artwork that commemorates Indigenous people and also educates the public.

With Indigenous People’s Day approaching on Oct. 11, Paul McLennan, a member of the Beacon Hill Black Alliance for Human Rights, asked the board to take action, pass the resolution and remove the genocide cannon. Beacon Hill has gathered more than 1,800 signatures on a petition in favor of removal. He shared some comments that accompanied the signatures.

“No need for a cannon on public property that commemorates the decimation of Indigenous people and their forced removal,” McLennan said when sharing the comments. “There are many great moments in DeKalb history that could be commemorated with a statue. All of them I’d be proud to show my Black son. This cannon isn’t on that list.” 

Others said that the community shouldn’t celebrate genocide and said the cannon re-traumatizes Creek and other Indigenous people.

Some also said they want to walk through Decatur knowing the city and county stand for justice, not violence and suppression. They also advocated for the need to stop whitewashing history and come to terms with the hateful, violent roots of white supremacy.

“We need to listen to and amplify the voices that a white supremacist society relentlessly tries to silence. Symbols rooted in hate do not belong in our public space,” McLennan said while sharing the comments. “Replace the cannon with a symbol that honors the lives of Indigenous people that will make them feel welcome back in their homeland.” 

The Rev. Karen Bryant Shipp, minister of music at Oakhurst Baptist Church, also supports removing the cannon.

“Mounted in the Square in 1906 by the United Daughters of the Confederacy, the cannon memorializes the malicious, violent removal of the Muscogee Creek Nation from their homes in Georgia, including what is now Decatur, and later from Alabama,” Bryant Shipp said. “It glorifies the Euro-centric Christian nationalism of the white settlers who first drove the Muscogee from the land.”

She and others demanded that the resolution be passed and acted upon without further delay.

“Given John Lewis’ unwavering support for justice for Indigenous peoples, it would be a travesty for a statue celebrating his life and work to be erected just feet away from a cannon used in the effort to disinherit and annihilate the Muscogee Nation,” she said. “Do not allow this relic to remain in [the] Decatur Square silently broadcasting its message of hate and racism and genocide.”

DeKalb Commissioner Ted Terry Discusses Community Policing, Expanding Mental Health Resources

Originally published by WABE

DeKalb County Super District 6 Commissioner Ted Terry says following the officer-involved shooting of Matthew Zadok Williams, his office was inundated with calls, social media posts and messages.

“We heard outrage, concern and the number one thing that I immediately thought of is how do we make sure this never happens again,” explained Commissioner Terry on Tuesday’s edition of “Closer Look.”

Terry talked with show host Rose Scott about a response letter that he wrote to John Jackson, the chairman of the DeKalb County Democratic Committee about several proposed initiatives aimed at improving community policing and expanding mental health resources countywide.

Commissioner Ted Terry introduces a resolution condemning AAPI violence, xenophobia, and hate

Newly elected DeKalb County Super District 6 Commissioner, Ted Terry, this week introduced an anti-hate resolution to the DeKalb County Board of Commissioners, a press release said.

The resolution is in response to attacks on Atlanta’s Asian community that occurred on March 16. The attacks resulted in the deaths of eight people at spas in the Atlanta area. . .

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Commissioner Ted Terry launches Fruitful Communities campaign

Originally published in Decaturish

DeKalb County, GA –– On Monday, April 12, Super District 6 Commissioner Ted Terry announced the launch of a new initiative aimed at transforming public spaces into regenerative, productive urban landscapes, a press release said.

The project, called Fruitful Communities, will address food insecurity, food deserts and developing policies that combat climate change at the local level. Commissioner Terry first piloted this program in Clarkston, where he previously served as Mayor, with a community-designed micro-food forest and meadow system and a first-of-its-kind urban grower training program for public works staff.

“Conventional landscaping has destroyed so many of our edible native plant species,” Terry said. “Often, the focus is on mowing, blowing, and spraying pesticides and herbicides on our public and private spaces. The bioaccumulation of these chemicals in our local environment impacts the overall health of our communities. The Fruitful Communities Initiative is an opportunity for us to move away from this inefficient and wasteful system.

“I envision a future DeKalb with communities full of urban growers tending and harvesting tens of thousands of pounds of fresh produce each year and putting much of it back into our local food system. We can reduce our carbon footprint and create localized, higher-paying green jobs.”

Fruitful Communities will kicked off with a Community Forum on April 14.

“Our philosophy at Roots Down has three main components: food, ecology, and community,” said Roots Down founder Jamie Rosenthal. “Most landscapes don’t prioritize any of these things, which is why they are underutilized and unproductive despite the millions of dollars DeKalb County spends every year to mow grass and spray synthetic chemicals. Fruitful Communities is a framework for government officials and residents to reimagine public and private spaces and get a return on their investment.”

Partners for Fruitful Communities include Compost Now, Servescape, The Audubon Society, Multiply Monarch, and Be Compostable. Goals for the Fruitful Communities initiative include installing Productive Urban Landscapes, green education for young people, and policy recommendations to help urban agriculture and edible landscaping thrive.

For updates regarding the Fruitful Communities initiative, visit