Columbus statue to stay

The statue of Christopher Columbus will not be coming down in New York City.  The news comes after a commission ordered by the mayor issued recommendations.

The city says it will place new historical markers in or around Columbus circle explaining the history of Columbus and of the monument itself, and commissioning a new monument, at a location in the city not yet determined, recognizing Indigenous peoples.

In all, the commission made recommendations on specific actions for four monuments and markers on city property but only recommended moving one of them.

When the city held public hearings on the controversial statues and monuments began many asked the city to retain the statues including that of Christopher Columbus, who many consider a symbol to the Italian-American community.

But for many, including some of the 110,000 Native Americans living in this city, the Columbus statute and his name on the circle and avenue north of it are a reminder that history ignores some of Columbus' other actions.

The mayoral advisory panel also heard from speakers against the controversial statue of J. Marion Sims on 5th Avenue and 103rd Street. Considered the father of modern gynecology, Sims experimented by operating on slave women, with neither consent nor anesthesia.  The commission concluded that it should be moved.

The mayor says the statue will be relocated to Greenwood Cemetery and informational plaques will be added to the pedestal to explain the origin of the statue and "historical context" that will be formulated at a later date.

As for the Theodore Roosevelt statue at the American Museum of Natural History, that will remain in place but the city says it will partner with the museum to provide additional context on-site through signage and education programming.