• Thu. Jul 25th, 2024

William Penn statue removal part of NPS Welcome Park rehabilitation proposal

Byusanewscart.com

Jan 7, 2024

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The National Park Service announced they wll be removing a statue of William Penn from a Philadelphia park commemorating his founding of Pennsylvania, situated at his former home.

The “rehabilitation” proposal for Welcome Park is meant to “provide a more welcoming, accurate, and inclusive experience for visitors,” NPS said in a news release. It “includes expanded interpretation of the Native American history of Philadelphia,” and was developed in collaboration with representatives from the Haudenosaunee, the Delaware Nation, the Delaware Tribe of Indians, the Shawnee Tribe and the Eastern Shawnee Tribe of Oklahoma. 

The park is named for the ship, Welcome, which Penn took to Philadelphia in 1682. The park was established 300 years later.

The call for public feedback on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter, has already resulted in more than 500 comments.

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William Penn statue Welcome Park

Welcome Park is dedicated to William Penn. This photo is from March 24, 2012. (John Greim/LightRocket via Getty Images)

“Leave the statue right where it is,” one user wrote in response to Independence National Historical Park’s tweet.

“My input is defund and disband the national park service,” another wrote.

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Philadelphia Skyline

Philadelphia’s skyline at night (Getty Images)

Comments can be officially submitted to NPS from Jan. 8 through Jan. 21 through Planning, Environment and Public Comment (PEPC) at https://parkplanning.nps.gov.

“Comments submitted through social media, phone calls, email or mail will not be accepted,” NPS said in the release. 

Penn and Tammany

William Penn (1644-1718) accepts a belt from Tamanend (1628-1698), chief of the Lenni-Lenape, as part of a treaty in which Penn purchased a section of land for the Pennsylvania colony, 1682. (Stock Montage/Getty Images)

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Should NPS go through with the proposal, Welcome Park will still have the street grid, the rivers and the east wall, which are aspects of the original design. It would add a planted buffer on three sides, and a gathering space, including circular benches. 

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