The University of Virginia athletic department announced they have updated their primary and secondary logos, getting rid of the curve on the handles of the logo that represented the serpentine walls on campus grounds.
"After the release of our new logos on April 24th, I was made aware of the negative connotation between the serpentine walls and slavery," athletic director Carla Williams said Monday in a statement. "I was not previously aware of the historical perspective indicating the original eight-foot-high walls were constructed to mask the institution of slavery and enslaved laborers from public view."
The sabres on both logos have been changed to remove the curves on the handles, which represented the serpentine walls. The walls were originally used to hid enslaved laborers on campus during the 19th century.
Virginia Athletics Announces Changes to New V-Sabre and Cavalier Shield Logos— Virginia Cavaliers (@VirginiaSports) June 15, 2020
Details: https://t.co/x3jvXOyram#GoHoos | #Wahoowa 🔶🔷 pic.twitter.com/R7xZcLkuuU
"There was no intent to cause harm, but we did, and for that I apologize to those who bear the pain of slavery in our history," Williams said. "As such, we have redesigned the logos to remove that detail. All other aspects of the logos will remain the same."
The school said they have started the process of updating their logos on all platforms.
Additionally, the Virginia athletic department is allowing fans who purchased gear between April 24-June 14 to contact the athletic department for an exchange.
"Over the last few weeks, I have worked to better educate myself and that education will continue," Williams said.
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