Posted on July 6, 2020

Baltimore’s Columbus Statue, Toppled by Protesters, Recovered from Inner Harbor Days Later

Phil Davis, Baltimore Sun, July 6, 2020

Diving crews from private companies lifted the statue of Christopher Columbus out of Baltimore’s Inner Harbor Monday morning, days after it was toppled by protesters.

Crews with Specialty Underwater Services and Iacoboni Site Specialists lifted the statue out of the water in pieces around 8:30 a.m.

John Pica, a former state senator and an Italian-American from Baltimore, helped organize the effort to recover the marble statue, which stood at the border of Baltimore’s Little Italy and Harbor East neighborhoods until a group heaved it into the Inner Harbor on the Fourth of July.


The grassroots activist group Baltimore BLOC listed 10 demands Sunday, including the removal of all statues that honor “white supremacists, owners of enslaved people, perpetrators of genocide and colonizers.” The group also seeks a redesign of the state flag, which uses a symbol that had been adopted by Confederate sympathizers during the Civil War.


Iacoboni Site Specialists is a Baltimore-based construction firm founded in 1991 by Thomas J. Iacoboni, the former president of the Associated Italian American Charities.


{snip} A woman who answered the phone for Specialty Underwater Services declined to comment about the company’s role in recovering the statue.

As crews placed the statue onto the back of a flatbed truck, a dispute erupted between a number of residents and a woman, who began to defend Columbus. {snip}