Last Saturday, a crew arrived in the early morning to remove the statue of General Philip Schuyler that has stood outside of the Albany, New York city hall for nearly 100 years, the New York Post reported.
Schuyler, a New York senator and father-in-law of Alexander Hamilton, was a Revolutionary War hero. But because he was also the largest slaveholder in Albany, the city’s mayor decided that his statue had to go.
It took the crew from Mullins Rigging nearly three hours to remove the statue from its base and load it onto a trailer so it could be moved to an undisclosed storage facility until the city figures out what to do with it.
According to WNYT in Albany, removing the statue is costing the city around $40,000.
The Albany Times-Union reported that the statue may include a time capsule containing coins, maps, and other items dating from 1925 when the statue was unveiled.
Despite his prominent place in both Albany and American history, Schuyler’s statue came under criticism during the Black Lives Matter riots that swept the country after the in-custody death of George Floyd in 2020.
During the height of the violent riots in June 2020, Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan, a Democrat, ordered Schuyler’s statue to be removed.
The project languished while the city awaited the results of an engineering study. But in March, Mayor Sheehan told WNYT that the statue would be removed in the coming weeks.
WNYT reporter Subrina Dhammi posted a video on Twitter showing the crew removing the statue.
Albany’s statue of General Schuyler is only one of many statues removed in New York State after the 2020 George Floyd riots.
The statue of Thomas Jefferson, which had been in New York’s City Hall for 187 years was removed in 2021.
That same year, the Museum of Natural History in New York removed the statue featuring Theodore Roosevelt.