Exhibition: The Family Room at One Liberty Plaza – World Trade Center Site

Tuesday, Sep 1, 2020

Albany, NY 12201

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Immediately following the September 11 attacks, an outdoor viewing platform was created overlooking the World Trade Center site where families could visit to grieve and observe the recovery efforts. Tributes, photographs, and messages of love from around the world adorned the platform.

As winter approached, family members requested a private, indoor space. Recognizing the need for a place of quiet reflection, space was donated by Brookfield Properties on the 20th floor of One Liberty Plaza overlooking the World Trade Center site.   The tributes and photographs from the outdoor viewing platform were carefully removed and re-installed in what became known as the Family Room.

Closed to the public, families from around the world continued to visit the Family Room for over 12 years, leaving thousands of items of remembrance. Each year on September 11, families gathered to privately grieve.  This special room served as a place for mourning, especially for those who never received the remains of their loved ones.

In April 2014, The National September 11 Memorial Museum opened with a new Family Room. Recognizing the historical significance of the One Liberty Plaza room, and the need to document and preserve what had been spontaneously created, a committee was established to ensure the long-term care and interpretation of the materials. Several panels from One Liberty Plaza were transferred to the new Museum Family Room to provide a tangible connection to the room's historical legacy. The remaining materials were donated to the New York State Museum for preservation and for the public to experience firsthand.

Today, the story of the Family Room continues. What began as a wooden platform, then a place for quiet reflection and tribute, lives on today through this collection and the new Family Room at the National September 11 Memorial Museum.

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