It’s perhaps ironic that decades, indeed a century-plus, of history, or in this case a “historical classification,” can be undone with a veritable swipe of a pen, or City Council vote, thus bolstering the adage that history may indeed be written by the victors.

What’s in a name, you might ask? Merriam Webster’s offers the following pertaining to “museum” – mu·se·um (myu̇-ˈzē-əm) noun: an institution devoted to the procurement, care, study and display of objects of lasting interest or value.

Despite the museum director’s stated values of “courage, equity, service, sustainability and trust,” not only does the deaccessioning of this historical piece, which museums do on occasion, but its proposed utter destruction seem to belie many of those proffered values. While it certainly took a modicum of courage to challenge the building’s protected status, it would seem to fall short on the sustainability and trust metrics.

To my eye, and other eyes better trained in these matters, at least the edifice under discussion certainly qualifies as a museum-quality artifact. Unfortunately, the PMA does not seem to feel it is a worthwhile part of its collection.

Mike Deltergo

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