Letter Protesting Potential Closure of Musee des Tissus in Lyon (February 2016)
February 5, 2016
Madame Fleur Pellerin
Ministre de la culture et de la communication
3, rue de Valois
Dear Madame Pellerin,
I am writing, in the name of the American Historical Association, of which I am president, to express the Association’s concern about the possible closing of the Musée des Tissus of the city of Lyon. Our organization, which numbers 13,500 members, is the principal professional organization of historians in the United States, and includes many specialists in the history of France, and the history of textiles, seen both as commodity and decorative art. The Association would regret the closing of the Musée des Tissus, which would greatly impair the ability of the historical profession and the general public alike to study and learn from its exceptional and monumental collections.
Many of our members have benefited from the work of the Musée des Tissus, which, as you know, since its founding in 1864 has assembled one of the world’s largest and best organized collections of textiles, drawn from every continent and over 4,500 years of human history. The American Historical Association maintains close contacts with the historical profession in France, and supports its efforts to study and defend France’s cultural patrimony. We therefore hope that the French government, and its Ministry of Culture, can take the necessary steps to keep it open.
AHA President, 2016
Note: AHA received a response to this letter on June 9, 2016, from Marie-Christine Labourdette, director of French museums.