Press release from Jim Maisano:
Legislators Maisano and Board of Legislators Request that Thomas Paine Historical Artifacts Remain in Westchester County – Hopefully in New Rochelle
Westchester County Legislator Jim Maisano (R, New Rochelle) announced today that he drafted a letter, signed by every member of the Westchester County Board of Legislators, that was mailed to the New York State Education Department and New York State Museum requesting that all historical artifacts located at the Thomas Paine National Historical Association (“TPNHA”) remain in Westchester – hopefully in New Rochelle (Paine_Ltr.pdfletter is attached).
Legislator Maisano stated, “It is unthinkable that these historically significant Thomas Paine holdings could be relocated outside of Westchester. I brought this issue to my colleagues, and we decided to speak in one voice to the appropriate authorities. We requested that the artifacts remain in our county at or near the Thomas Paine Cottage, a historical treasure in New Rochelle.”
This possible relocation is due to a recent decision by the Charities Bureau of the New York State Attorney General’s office, which is causing the holdings at the TPNHA to be disbursed to other museums. Legislator Maisano and his colleagues were greatly concerned that these holdings could be sent to museums outside of Westchester County or even New York State.
For the past 80 years, many of these historical artifacts have been displayed at the famous Thomas Paine Cottage in New Rochelle, which is maintained by the Huguenot and New Rochelle Historical Association and the group alerted Legislator Maisano about this issue. Legislator Maisano’s letter recommended two excellent locations for the Thomas Paine holdings: Westchester County Historical Society or Iona College.
“We must remain vigilant to protect and promote New Rochelle’s great history, and I hope our letter convinces the decision-makers not to remove the artifacts from our area. They belong where they will always by accessible to the Thomas Paine Cottage – our famous historic site right here in the Queen City of the Sound,” Legislator Maisano said.