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Sunday, March 31, 2013


Mar 14                       
New York City’s General Society of Mechanics and Tradesmen is incorporated.

May 17                       
The New York Stock Exchange is formed beneath a buttonwood tree on Wall Street by a group of bankers, including Mendes Seixes Nathan.

Jul 1                       
A tornado strikes New York City, sinking boats in the harbor carrying 29 men and women out for a Sabbath sail.

Sep 29                       
New York City’s State Street and others are laid out.

Oct 8                       
Boston businessman Abijah Hammond donates a device for drilling for water to the New York City government. They order experiments on a lot adjoining city hall.

Oct 12                       
New York City's Society of St. Tammany holds the first major celebration of Columbus' discovery of America.

The law firm of Cadwallader, Wickersham & Taft is founded.    **    The Belvedere House in lower Manhattan is the first country club in the city.    **    A United States Bank branch opens here.    **   Another grand jury indicts the city for its filthy streets. Again nothing is done.    **    The city council does away with a fixed payment for the digging of a public well and agrees to pay a dollar a foot for all approved wells.    **    A tontine organized by Lewis Morris to fund a toll drawbridge across the lower Harlem River fails to raise enough money. A commission, including lawyer Aaron Burr, is named to supervise the construction of a good road leading to the drawbridge.     **    Isaac Coulthard builds a brewery on the banks of the Collect Pond.    **    The Drone Club is formed by James Kent, William Dunlap, Charles Brockden Brown and Edward and Samuel Miller, as a successor to the Moot Club, to discuss technical matters of law.

Feb 20                       
Lawyer and land speculator James Wadsworth writes from New York City to his cousin Jeremiah Wadsworth in Connecticut, suggesting he buy a particular tract of land in the Genesee Valley.

Apr 3                       
New York City receives the news of France's declaration of war on Britain.

Jun 12                       
The French warship Embuscade arrives at New York City from Charleston, where it had landed Edmond Charles Edouard "Citizen" Genet, agent of the new French republic, in April.

Jun 15                       
Pro-French New Yorkers display a Cap of Liberty on a pole in front of the new Tontine Coffee House at Wall and Water streets.

Jun 20                       
The Embuscade departs from New York City in search of further prizes.

Oct 1                       
New York City lawyer Peter Hawes helps found the Calliopean Society, to present and discuss poetry.

The 7 State Street home of James Watson, later to become the Shrine of Blessed Mother (Saint) Seton, is completed. The architecture is attributed to John McComb, Jr.    **      203 members of a merchants' association erect the Tontine Building (The Coffee House) at Wall and Water streets, to provide a business exchange. The funds are provided by members' annuities, the eventual remainder to be distributed among the seven longest surviving members. Archibald Gracie is elected its first president.    **    An attempt to sell the land in the former Collect Pond area elicits no responses.    **    Thrice-weekly trips both ways are made by stage-carriage to and from Boston, in 3 or 4 days, at a cost of four-pence a mile.    **    Citizen Genet is entertained by the Tammany Society. Mrs. Ann Julia Hatton writes an opera called Tammany, or The Indan Chief in his honor.    **    The Burns Coffee House at Broadway, north of Trinity Church, is demolished. The City Hotel will be built on the site.    **   James Kent becomes the first professor of law at Columbia University.    **    Twenty-two-year-old Yale-educated physician Elihu Hubbard Smith, arrives in New York from Connecticut to work on the staff of New York Hospital. By the end of the year he’s joined James Kent, businessman William Woolsey and playwright William Dunlap, to form the Friendly Club, dedicated to intellectual improvement.    **    Scottish-born shipping merchant Archibald Gracie moves to the city.    **    The French begins using Bedloes Island as an isolation station.    **    Philadelphian John Bill Ricketts brings his circus company to perform at Broadway and Broome Street. The group will return to the city five times.    **    Peter Schermerhorn combines properties at Beekman Slip  (the future Schermerhorn Row and Fulton Street).    **    Future Manhattan businessman Ira Hawley is born in Ridgefield, Connecticut.

©  2013    David Minor / Eagles Byte

Wednesday, March 13, 2013


The Museum of the City of New York is currently in the midst of a long term project to provide increased access to all of its holdings.  One aspect of the project, begun in 2008, is the digitization of its holdings, starting with the vast collections of photographs, prints, and other works on paper depicting the changing city over time, now available via our online Collections Portal.  As a complement to the online Collections Portal, this site will provide access to archival collections at both the Museum of the City of New York and the South Street Seaport Museum.
The archivists will continue to make new finding aids available as collections are processed, but feel free to contact the research departments directly if you don’t see what you are looking for here.
Please click on the links below to learn about research services and contact information at each institution:
Museum of the City of New York
South Street Seaport Museum

Friday, March 8, 2013


A very important way you can support the South Street Seaport Historic District is coming up next week.

Please attend the City Council public hearing on the future of the Seaport onThursday, March 14, at 9:30am near City Hall. We need as many supporters present as possible. It also helps a great deal if we know how many are coming.

Please email us at for more details and to let us know you can make it.
If you'd like to speak at the meeting, you will have the opportunity, but the most important thing is that you attend. Please join us!

Save Our Seaport!

Our Next Meeting

Saturday, March 9
Meade's (Upstairs)
22 Peck Slip

Are you or were you a
Seaport Volunteer?
Please fill out our

Volunteer Census.

Contact Us
(347) 6-PIER16

About Us

Our Mission: To save South Street’s working waterfront, beginning with our schooners Pioneer and Lettie G. Howard, then continuing inland to restore interest and life to the rest of the Museum.