(DNAINFO) Noah Horowitz | November 13, 2015 — The one-time house of former President Chester A. Arthur deserves landmark recognition despite lacking architectural significance, according to a host of preservationists who spoke Thursday at a hearing before the Landmarks Preservation Commission.
Arthur may be better remembered for his facial hair than his presidential legacy, but his house, located at 123 Lexington Ave. between East 28th Street and East 29th Street, is one of the city’s only homes of a then-sitting president, as Arthur was unexpectedly sworn in there after the assassination of James Garfield. That should be enough to protect it as a landmark, according to supporters of its designation.
“The architecture has changed, but we feel there is history in this building,” said Gary Papush, a member of Community Board Six. “We hope Landmarks will recognize that history and the historical figure that lived there is basis for designating this building.”
The hearing was part of an initiative by the the LPC to clear out a backlog of potential sites, some of which, like the Chester A. Arthur house, have been on the list for decades. The first and last hearing for 123 Lexington Ave. was in 1966.