Town Historian Mandate in Westchester: The Job’s the Law

New York is the only state requiring its towns, cities and villages to have an official historian.



Historic Historians

Your town better keep its historical facts straight—in Westchester, it’s the law.

Apparently, our love for history here at Westchester Magazine puts us in good company: Since 1919, New York has been the only state in the nation with a quaint law mandating that every “city, town, or village” have an official historian. There are about 1,600 past-minded citizens in the corps, members of which are usually appointed by a mayor or town manager and do not get paid. Their jobs can range from collecting documents to putting on public talks—or really anything else they deem appropriate.
Is it too much to hope for a 2019 Centenary Celebration of the program?

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