AG James Statement on the Preservation of Brooklyn Underground Railroad Site

NEW YORK – In response to the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission’s decision to preserve 227 Duffield Street as a historical landmark, New York Attorney General Letitia James issued the following statement:

“Brooklyn’s 227 Abolitionist Place, formerly Duffield Street, represents one of the most important ties that New York has to our abolitionist roots — roots that every Black New Yorker is proud of. During this time of national reckoning over the legacy of slavery and continued injustice faced by Black communities, maintaining that piece of history is critical in remembering how far we’ve come, and how far we still must go. Since my time in the City Council, I have fought for the protection of this important site, and now, I am immensely proud that during Black History Month, we can finally say it’s here to stay. This piece of Black New York history will be forever safeguarded so that future generations may know its story.”

Since her time on the New York City Council, Attorney General James has worked to preserve this historic site. In 2007, she passed legislation to rename the block of Duffield Street “Abolitionist Place” and successfully stopped the city from tearing down the structure for new development. In July 2020, she testified before the Landmarks Preservation Commission about the importance of designating the site as a landmark and protecting it for generations to come.