Sat. May 21st, 2022

The sculpture, which was housed at the American Museum of Natural History, showed the 26th president on horseback with a Native American man and an African man on either side of him.

A spokesman for the museum told CNN in a written statement Thursday that the process of removing the statue was “carried out with historic conservation specialists and approved by several New York City agencies.” It will include a restoration of the square in front of the museum.

The removal began Tuesday, and the sculpture was away from Thursday, after a year and a half process.

“The statue itself communicates a racial hierarchy that the museum and members of the public have long found disturbing,” the museum wrote in its June request. This is conveyed in the composition of the statue: The white man, Roosevelt, is placed in the middle on horseback, while the other two men are behind him and walking.

That June 2020 request was approved by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio at the time. A year later, the New York City Public Design Commission voted unanimously to remove and temporarily keep the sculpture.
In this image from December 2, 2021, construction workers begin removing the Theodore Roosevelt statue.
A statue of Thomas Jefferson is removed from New York City Hall after 187 years
A new home for the statue was announced last November: Medora, North Dakota, about two hours west of Bismarck, in Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library.

The library, which is due to open in 2026, said in a statement that it had entered into a long-term loan agreement with New York City.

Since 1940, the sculpture had stood in front of the New York Museum and was originally commissioned to celebrate Roosevelt.

“The museum is proud to continue as the site of the state of New York’s official memorial to Theodore Roosevelt,” it added in a written statement.

CNN’s Liam Reilly contributed to this report.

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