COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — A $20,000 acrylic case now protects Thomas Jefferson’s original headstone on the University of Missouri campus, a response to vandalism concerns amid an ongoing dispute about whether the university should honor the third president who also was a slave owner.
The Columbia Daily Tribune reports that the clear case was installed Saturday over the granite obelisk that was originally erected at Monticello in Virginia in 1833. It was replaced in 1883 and given to the University of Missouri.
A university spokesman says the case was installed because of vandalism to a Jefferson statue that is also on campus, and graffiti written on the sidewalk during the summer.