The Death of a Library: An American Tragedy

For years the circumstances that led to the death of the library were steeped in incredible lies and wild rumors.  One rumor focuses on the true intentions of the Mayor of the time, Angelo Martinelli, and his desire to undo the white flight to the east side of Yonkers. Rumors hinting of racism—the area surrounding the library had become increasingly populated with blacks and Puerto Ricans—is also explored as a reason why the library was destroyed. Corruption in Yonkers city government has also been alleged, and while it’s hard to prove people took money under the table, the chronic pattern of cronyism is undeniable. Among the rumor mill, claims persist that Mayor Angelo Martinelli wanted to build a sleek high-rise tower to replace both the Yonkers City Hall and the library. Other rumors suggest the library was razed to make room for a bridge to New Jersey. Another allegation accuses Yonkers City Council Member Harry Oxman of sacrificing the library to spare his small-time dry cleaning business. And finally, the library itself has been accused of being its own worst enemy. What really happened?  

Patricia Vaccarino
Publication Year: 
Modus Operandi Books