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'It's a very small win': Antiques store removes racist items from shelves

WISN Milwaukee 3/9/2023
© Provided by WISN Milwaukee

An antiques store in Milwaukee has removed racist items from its shelves, though it's unclear where the items went.

Antiques on Pierce came under fire last week by protesters and vendors calling on the business to remove figurines, posters and other household items for sale that depicted racist stereotypes from the Jim Crow era of Black men and women.

Chloe Longmire, owner of Chase My Creations, first saw the items while participating in a pop-up market inside Antiques on Pierce last month.

"I was shocked and I was kind of sick to my stomach, because I know the history of that art and I know how it was made to make us feel," Longmire said. "I asked an employee, 'Hey, do you know what's up with that stuff that's on display? It's really offensive.' They said, 'No, it's history,' and completely dismissed my concern."

"These concerns have continued to be dismissed time and time again and people's voices have just been cast aside," Longmire said.

Longmire said she recently heard the items had been removed, so she went to the store to check for herself.

Video Longmire shared with WISN 12 News on Wednesday shows the booth that was filled with the items is now stocked with other things for sale.

"Every single thing that I had found to be problematic and offensive was gone," Longmire said.

The owner of Antiques on Pierce declined to comment on the matter last week and did not immediately respond to requests for comment on Wednesday.

"I don't feel like this is necessarily a win, because they were quietly removed, without being addressed, without any accountability on the part of this establishment," Longmire said. "With the harm they've caused to the community for years and years now, I think it's a very small win."

Longmire said she doesn't know exactly what happened to the items and worries about whose hands they're in now. She said she hopes they are placed in a museum, where their historical significance will be used in context.

READ MORE:'It's a very small win': Antiques store removes racist items from shelves

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