Information contained on this page is provided by an independent third-party content provider. WorldNow and this Station make no warranties or representations in connection therewith. If you have any questions or comments about this page please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
SOURCE Representative Nydia M. Velazquez, Ranking Member, House Committee on Small Business
WASHINGTON, Oct. 30, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The House Committee on Natural Resources today approved legislation to allow an expansion of the Lower East Side (LES) Tenement Museum. Authored by Rep. Nydia M. Velazquez (D-NY), H.R. 1846, the "Lower East Side Tenement National Historic Site Amendments Act," would allow the museum's expansion at 103 Orchard Street, enabling the local landmark to better serve visitors.
"Whether it was Asian immigrants, Irish or German emigres, or recently arrived European Sephardic Jews, the LES' tenements housed generation after generation of new arrivals to our City," Velazquez said. "The Museum tells their story and by allowing it to grow, we can ensure visitors continue enjoying this local historic gem."
Since its 1988 founding, the LES Tenement Museum has recounted the story of the 7,000 working class families who lived in the historic structures located in the LES. During the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the three tenements at 103, 105, and 107 Orchard Street were populated largely by east European Jewish immigrants, most of whom worked in the local garment industry. Their experiences, along with the stories of other tenement residents, are explored and showcased through the museum's guided tours and exhibits.
In 1998, Congress designated the Museum's location at 97 Orchard Street as an affiliated site of the National Park System and the Secretary of Interior declared the museum a historic landmark in 1994. As interest in the museum has grown, there is growing need for additional space. By having the National Park System recognize the Museum's expansion at 103 Orchard Street, H.R. 1846 will enable the Museum to open a new visitor center and transform current portions of the museum into additional educational exhibits and tours.
"This new National Park Service-affiliated site will allow the Tenement Museum to tell the stories of Puerto Rican and Chinese families who brought their energies and their dreams to the Lower East Side," said Morris Vogel, President of the Museum. "We'll use the homes in which real people actually lived to provide accounts of the largest Puerto Rican community on the American mainland and the largest Chinatown in the Western hemisphere. Their stories tell about the people we've become. We're excited that Congress has taken this step."
The legislation was approved in Committee by voice vote. Now that the Natural Resources Committee, which has jurisdiction over the Park Services, has reported out the bill, it must go to the full House for consideration.
"Our City has been made stronger, more diverse and better by those who came here from every corner of the globe in search of a better life," Velazquez added. "The LES Tenement Museum honors this legacy and I'm proud to support its expansion."
CONTACT: Alex Haurek
©2012 PR Newswire. All Rights Reserved.