Wednesday, July 2, 2014


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Schumer joins effort to create Sing Sing Prison museum

OSSINING – US Senator Charles Schumer joined the local campaign to secure funds to create a Sing Sing Prison museum at the state correctional facility in Ossining.

The prison is still active, but there are parts that are no longer in use. Some community groups have been pressing to have it used for a museum.

In Ossining, the senator said such a facility would be a tourist and cultural attraction for Westchester County. The prison is “home to a fascinating, 200-year history, one that includes many artifacts and amazing tales of some of the most infamous prisoners, not to mention a spectacular river-side setting.”

He is seeking a National Endowment for the Humanities’ planning grant to tell the story of the prison, which houses the defunct “Old Sparky” electric chair that was used to execute 614 convicts.

Among those inmates housed at Sing Sing have been “Son of Sam” David Berkowitz, Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, who were sentenced to death there after being found guilty of spying on the U.S. for the Soviet Union, and members of the infamous Murder Incorporated group, which carried out killings for the Mafia in the 1930s and ‘40s.

Schumer said a Sing Sing museum could do for the Hudson Valley what Alcatraz has done for the West Coast in terms of tourism.