WASHINGTON, D.C. – In the halls of the US Capitol building there are statues that represent each state, but not every part of the US is represented. There are no statues representing any of the US territories and some members want to change that.
When visitors walk through the halls of the US Capitol building, they usually pass by statues like these honoring people notable in each state’s history, like Robert Livingston from New York, Pennsylvania’s Robert Fulton and Gerald Ford from Michigan, just to name a few.
Back in the mid 1800s, congress passed legislation for each state to donate a statue to represent their state. Currently, each state has two statues honoring historical people from their state but some members of congress believe a few statues are missing. Out of the one hundred statues, none represent the US territories.
“I sure wish there was representation for the territories,” said Rep. Jim Moylan (R- GUAM).
Like many visitors, members of the House of Representatives pass through halls like Statuary Hall to enter the House chamber. Just like it’s name, it’s one of the places in the Capitol that houses several of these statues.
“Everyday I come to the most visited hall, this room, in the capitol,” said Moylan. “And since 1864, congress authorized the states to have a statue in place. From that day until present, every state of the 50 states have had a statue placed there. That’s over 159 years since this has passed but none of the territories are represented. Maybe we were forgotten but that was a long time ago but I think we should be remembered.”
Moylan, along with the other delegates from the US territories are sponsoring legislation to include statues representing the territories. Moylan said by enacting this legislation, the US Capitol would then represent all of America.
“It’s time we have equity,” said Moylan. “We are citizens, we are US territories. Our representation would mean a lot to many of the people in the territories.”
The Architect of the Capitol said proceedings for the donation of a statue usually begins in the state legislature. Moylan believes there is enough support in this congress to pass this legislation.