Roosevelt Statue to Be Removed from Museum of Natural History
The equestrian memorial to Theodore Roosevelt has long prompted objections as a symbol of colonialism and racism.
Credit…Caitlin Ochs for The New York Times
The bronze statue of Theodore Roosevelt, on horseback and flanked by a Native American man and an African man, which has presided over the entrance to the American Museum of Natural History in New York since 1940, is coming down.
The decision, proposed by the museum and agreed to by New York City, which owns the building and property, came after years of objections from activists and at a time when the killing of George Floyd has initiated an urgent nationwide conversation about racism.
For many, the equestrian statue at the museum’s Central Park West entrance has come to symbolize a painful legacy of colonial expansion and racial discrimination.
[The museum’s president, Ellen V. Futter,] made [it] clear that the museum’s decision was based on the statue itself — namely its “hierarchical composition”—- and not on Roosevelt, whom the museum continues to honor as “a pioneering conservationist.”
“Simply put,” she added, “the time has come to move it.”
The museum took action amid a heated national debate over the appropriateness of statues or ….
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