Duke University officials discovered a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee at Duke Chapel was defaced Thursday morning.
University officials have not said how the damage was inflicted, but most of the damage was to the statue's face.
Officials are investigating and increased security around the chapel.
Thursday's incident is the first known damage targeting the Lee statue. The statue is one of 10 historical figures outside the chapel. The statues are of significant figures of the South and Protestant and Methodist traditions.
Duke President Vincent Price said the entire Duke community deserves to have a voice in the statue's future in a statement Thursday.