Albany, the capital of New York State, removed a statue of a Revolutionary War hero and United States Senator, Philip Schuyler, this week due to the fact that he owned slaves.
A nine-foot statue of Schuyler stood near the Albany City Hall since 1925 before being taken down Saturday. The city also removed the pedestal and plaque below the statue. Local press reported that the removal cost taxpayers $40,000.
The statue will be placed in an unannounced facility while the Albany City Council convenes a commission to determine where to place it. Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan (D) announced the plan to remove the statue in 2020 following the death of George Floyd.
She said that engineering studies regarding the statue’s removal “took time, it took longer than I wanted it to.”
One county legislator called the move “unquestionably wrong.”
— Subrina Dhammi (@SubrinaDhammi) June 10, 2023
Schuyler played a significant role in the development of the early American Republic. He was a member of one of the major families of the New York colony who fought in the French and Indian War, becoming an officer.
Schuyler later served in the New York State Assembly and the Second Continental Congress prior to being appointed a major general in the Continental Army.
He served a stint in the Second Continental Congress before playing a significant role in one of the most decisive campaigns of the war prior to the Battle of Saratoga, which convinced France to enter the war on the side of the American colonists.
Following the end of the war, Schuyler again served in the state legislature and was an early supporter of the ratification of the U.S. Constitution.
Schuyler ended his political career with two tenures in the United States Senate prior to resigning due to poor health.
He has been featured in a number of historical and fictional works, especially due to his closeness to important events in early American history.
Schuyler’s first stint in the Senate was ended due to a loss to future-Vice President Aaron Burr, who later shot and killed Schuyler’s son-in-law Alexander Hamilton.