The Mississippi state flag, which features the Confederate battle flag, was removed from the University of Mississippi campus in a ceremony Monday morning.
The move comes after student, staff, and faculty organizations all voted to remove the flag in meetings last week.
As the campus opened Monday morning, University Police Department officers lowered and furled the flag in Lyceum Circle. The flag will be preserved in the university archives along with resolutions from students, faculty and staff calling for its removal.
"The University of Mississippi community came to the realization years ago that the Confederate battle flag did not represent many of our core values, such as civility and respect for others," Interim Chancellor Morris Stocks said in a statement. "Since that time, we have become a stronger and better university. We join other leaders in our state who are calling for a change in the state flag."
Stocks noted that other public universities and local governments have already taken this step, and he continues to encourage state leaders to create a new flag.
“Mississippi and its people are known far and wide for hospitality and a warm and welcoming culture. But our state flag does not communicate those values,” Stocks said. “Our state needs a flag that speaks to who we are. It should represent the wonderful attributes about our state that unite us, not those that still divide us.”