Markey Commends White House Decision to Display Armenian Orphan Rug


Senator Previously Urged White House to Hold Historic Exhibition 



BOSTON (October 15, 2014) – Today, Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) applauded the Obama Administration’s announcement that the “Armenian Orphan Rug” will be displayed later this year and praised President Obama and the White House for acting to display this important symbol. The Armenian Orphan Rug was made by survivors of the Armenian Genocide and presented to then-President Calvin Coolidge in 1925 in appreciation of American assistance to the survivors of the genocide. It took Armenian girls in the Ghazir Orphanage of the Near East Relief Society ten months to weave. 


“The Armenian Orphan Rug is an important piece of our history. Its display serves not just as a reminder of the horrors of the Armenian Genocide but also of the longstanding friendship between the Armenian and American people,” said Senator Markey. “I commend President Obama and the White House for working with me and my Congressional colleagues to ensure that this rug can be given the public exhibition that it deserves.”


“The Armenian Orphan Rug, given to President Coolidge as a symbolic thank you for America’s humanitarian relief effort in helping to save the survivors of the Armenian Genocide, is a treasured piece of American history,” stated Armenian Assembly of America Executive Director Bryan Ardouny. “As such we welcome today’s announcement by the White House and look forward to the permanent display of this historic rug,” Ardouny continued.


Senator Markey wrote to President Obama last December to urge him to make the rug available for display, consistent with the need to protect and preserve this precious reminder of a dark chapter in the history of Armenia and the world.


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