The Man in Black is headed to the U.S. Capitol. A statue of Johnny Cash will represent the state of Arkansas in a U.S. Capitol display in Washington, D.C. A statue of civil rights leader Daisy Bates will also represent the state in the display.
Arkansas governor Asa Hutchinson signed a bill to replace Arkansas' current statues with those of Cash and Bates. Hutchinson said the statues of Cash and Bates, two of the state's most respected figures, will help tell the story of the state of Arkansas.
"This is an extraordinary moment recognizing the contributions of two incredible Arkansans," Hutchinson said. "We want our memories, through our statues, to tell the story of Arkansas. I believe our story is well represented by these two historic figures."
Friends and families of both Cash and Bates were present during the signing.
Bates was an American civil rights actives, activist, speaker and journalist who served as a mentor to the nine black students who integrated Little Rock Central High School in 1957.
Cash was raised in Dyess, Arkansas from the age of three throughout his high school years. The country icon always maintained that his upbringing in the small rural town helped shape the rest of his life and remained a bedrock of inspiration for him.
Cash's daughter, Rosanne Cash, was present when the bill was signed into law. Rosanne Cash said it's particularly special that her father will share the honor with Bates.
"We're especially honored that a statue of my dad has been chosen to represent Arkansas in our nation's Capitol. I'm just... it's such a thrill. This has been made even more special by the fact that he will be sharing this honor with Daisy Bates," Rosanne Cash said during a Thursday (April 11) ceremony. "I have so much respect for her. She was a true humanitarian. Her commitment to social justice, to civil rights is unparalleled and really an inspiration."
Last year, Cash's boyhood home in Dress was named a historic place.