Fraunces Tavern

Fraunces Tavern is a landmark museum and restaurant in New York City, situated at 54 Pearl Street at the corner of Broad Street. The location played a prominent role in history before, during and after the American Revolution, serving as a headquarters for George Washington, a venue for peace negotiations with the British, and housing federal offices in the Early Republic. It has been owned since 1904 by Sons of the Revolution in the State of New York Inc., which carried out a major conjectural reconstruction, and claim it is Manhattan's oldest surviving building. The museum interprets the building and its history, along with varied exhibitions of art and artifacts.[4] The tavern is a tourist site and a part of the American Whiskey Trail and the New York Freedom Trail.[5][6]

Fraunces Tavern Block
North and west fronts of Fraunces Tavern on Pearl Street at Broad Street
Fraunces Tavern is located in Lower Manhattan
Fraunces Tavern
Fraunces Tavern is located in Manhattan
Fraunces Tavern
Fraunces Tavern is located in New York City
Fraunces Tavern
Fraunces Tavern is located in New York
Fraunces Tavern
Fraunces Tavern is located in the United States
Fraunces Tavern
LocationBounded by Pearl Street, Coenties Slip, Water Street and Broad Street, New York, New York, USA
Architectural styleVarious
NRHP reference #77000957[1]
Significant dates
Added to NRHPApril 28, 1977
Designated NYCHDNovember 14, 1978[2]
Fraunces Tavern
Fraunces Tavern, south side
West front of Fraunces Tavern on Broad Street
Location54 Pearl Street, New York, New York, USA
Coordinates40°42′12″N 74°0′41″W / 40.70333°N 74.01139°WCoordinates: 40°42′12″N 74°0′41″W / 40.70333°N 74.01139°W
Architectural styleGeorgian
NRHP reference #08000140[3]
Significant dates
Added to NRHPMarch 6, 2008
Designated NYCLNovember 23, 1965

Early history

Pre-Revolutionary history

New York Mayor Stephanus van Cortlandt built his home in 1671 on the site, but retired to his manor on the Hudson River and gave the property in 1700 to his son-in-law, Etienne "Stephen" DeLancey, a French Huguenot who had married Van Cortlandt's daughter, Anne. The DeLancey family contended with the Livingston family for leadership of the Province of New York.

DeLancey built the current building as a house in 1719. The small yellow bricks used in its construction were imported from the Dutch Republic and the sizable mansion ranked highly in the province for its quality.[7] His heirs sold the building in 1762 to Samuel Fraunces who converted the home into the popular tavern, first named the Queen's Head.

Before the American Revolution, the building was one of the meeting places of the secret society, the Sons of Liberty. During the tea crisis caused by the British Parliament's passage of the Tea Act 1773, the patriots forced a British naval captain who tried to bring tea to New York to give a public apology at the building. The patriots, disguised as American Indians (like those of the subsequent Boston Tea Party), then dumped the ship's tea cargo into New York Harbor.

In 1768, the New York Chamber of Commerce was founded by a meeting in the building.[8]


In August 1775, Americans, principally the 'Hearts of Oak' – a student militia of Kings College, of which Alexander Hamilton was a member – took possession of cannons from the artillery battery at the southern point of Manhattan and fired on HMS Asia. The British Royal Navy ship retaliated by firing a 32-gun broadside on the city, sending a cannonball through the roof of the building.

When the war was all but won, the building was the site of "British-American Board of Inquiry" meetings, which negotiated to ensure to American leaders that no "American property" (meaning former slaves who were emancipated by the British for their military service) be allowed to leave with British troops. Led by Brigadier General Samuel Birch, board members reviewed the evidence and testimonies that were given by freed slaves every Wednesday from April to November, 1783, and British representatives were successful in ensuring that almost all of the loyalist blacks of New York maintained their liberty and could be evacuated with the "Redcoats" when they left if so desired.[9] Through this process, Birch created the Book of Negroes.

Washington's farewell to his officers

"Washington's Farewell to His Officers"
Washington's Farewell by Alonzo Chappel 1866
Engraving after painting by Alonzo Chappel
DateDecember 4, 1783
LocationFraunces Tavern, Broad and Pearl Streets, New York Town

A week after British troops had evacuated New York on November 25, 1783, the tavern hosted an elaborate "turtle feast" dinner, on December 4, 1783, in the building's Long Room for U.S. Gen. George Washington where he bade farewell to his officers of the Continental Army by saying "[w]ith a heart full of love and gratitude, I now take leave of you. I most devoutly wish that your latter days may be as prosperous and happy as your former ones have been glorious and honorable." As he later asked to take each one of his officers by the hand for a personal word.[10][11][12]


In January 1785, New York City became the seat of the Confederation Congress, the nation's central government under the "Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union." The departments of Foreign Affairs, Finance and War had their offices at Fraunces Tavern.

With the ratification of the United States Constitution in March 1789, the Confederation Congress's departments became federal departments, and New York City became the first official national capital. The inauguration of George Washington as first President of the United States took place in April 1789. Under the July 1789 Residence Act, Congress moved the national capital to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania for a 10-year period, while the permanent national capital was under construction in what is now Washington, D.C. The federal departments vacated their offices in the building and moved to Philadelphia in 1790.

19th and 20th centuries

Historic buildings of America as seen and described by famous writers; (1906) (14773061275)
Fraunces Tavern, between the 1890 alteration and the 1900 restoration.

The building operated throughout much of the 19th century, but suffered several serious fires beginning in 1832. Having been rebuilt several times, the structure's appearance was changed to the extent that the original building design is not known. The building was owned by Malvina Keteltas in the early 1800s. Ernst Buermeyer and his family leased part of the property in 1845 and ran a hotel called the Broad Street House at this location until 1860.[13] After a disastrous fire in 1852, two stories were added, making the Tavern a total of five stories high. In 1890, the taproom was lowered to street level and the first floor exterior was remodeled, and its original timbers sold as souvenirs.


Valentine's City of New York guide book
Valentine's City of New York guide book (1920) by Henry Collins Brown, featured the tavern on the cover.

In 1900, the tavern was slated for demolition by its owners, who wanted to use the land for a parking lot. A number of organizations, most notably the Daughters of the American Revolution, worked to preserve it, and convinced New York state government leaders to use their power of eminent domain and designate the building as a park (which was the only clause of the municipal ordinances that could be used for protection, as laws were not envisioned at the time for the subject of "historic preservation", then in its infancy). The temporary designation was later rescinded when the property was acquired in 1904 by the Sons of the Revolution In the State of New York Inc., primarily with funds willed by Frederick Samuel Tallmadge, the grandson of Benjamin Tallmadge, George Washington's chief of intelligence during the Revolution (a plaque depicting Tallmadge is affixed to the building). An extensive reconstruction was completed in 1907 under the supervision of early historic preservation architect, William Mersereau.[14] A guide book of the era called the tavern "the most famous building in New York".[15]

Historian Randall Gabrielan wrote in 2000 that "Mersereau claimed his remodeling of Fraunces Tavern was faithful to the original, but the design was controversial in his time. There was no argument over removing the upper stories, which were known to have been added during the building's 19th Century commercial use, but adding the hipped roof was questioned. He used the Philipse Manor House in Yonkers, New York as a style guide and claimed to follow the roof line of the original, as found during construction, traced on the bricks of an adjoining building."[16] Architects Norval White and Elliot Willensky wrote in 2000 that the building was "a highly conjectural reconstruction – not a restoration – based on 'typical' buildings of 'the period,' parts of remaining walls, and a lot of guesswork."[17]

The building was declared a landmark in 1965 by the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission, and the building's block bounded by Pearl Street, Water Street, Broad Street and Coenties Slip was included on November 14, 1978.[2] The building's block was included on April 28, 1977,[1] on the National Register of Historic Places by the National Park Service, and the building was included on March 6, 2008.[18]


Fraunces Tavern bombing
LocationManhattan, New York, U.S.
DateJanuary 24, 1975
Attack type
Non-fatal injuries

A bomb planted in the tavern exploded on January 24, 1975, killing four people and injuring more than 50 others. The Puerto Rican clandestine paramilitary organization "Fuerzas Armadas de Liberación Nacional Puertorriqueña" (Armed Forces of Puerto Rican National Liberation, or FALN), which had executed other bomb incidents in New York in the 1970s, claimed responsibility. No one had been prosecuted for the bombing as of April 17, 2013.[19][20]

Among the victims who died was a young banker, Frank Connor (33), who had worked his way up over 15 years from clerk to assistant vice president at Morgan Guaranty Trust. Connor left behind his wife and two sons. A second New York worker was Harold H. Sherburne (66), whose career on Wall Street spanned four decades. Two executives, James Gezork (32), of Wilmington, Delaware, and Alejandro Berger (28), who worked for a Philadelphia-based chemical company, had traveled to New York for business meetings. Sherburne, Connor, and Berger died at the scene; Gezork died later at the hospital.

In a note police found in a phone booth nearby, the FALN wrote, "we … take full responsibility for the especially detornated (sic) bomb that exploded today at Fraunces Tavern, with reactionary corporate executives inside." The note explained that the bomb — roughly 10 pounds of dynamite that had been crammed into an attaché case and slipped into the tavern's entrance hallway — was retaliation for the "CIA ordered bomb" that killed three and injured 11 in a restaurant in Mayagüez, Puerto Rico, two weeks earlier. As of December 2012, a memorial plaque with some victims' names is hung in the Tavern's large dining room.

Recent uses

Fraunces Tavern Museum
EstablishedDecember 4, 1907
Location54 Pearl Street, New York, New York, USA
OwnerSons of the Revolution in the State of New York, Inc.

Since 1907, the Fraunces Tavern Museum on the second and third floors has helped to interpret the Fraunces Tavern and the collection of artifacts that it holds. The museum comprises nine galleries: The John Ward Dunsmore collection of painted scenes of the American revolution; the Elizabeth and Stanley DeForest Scott gallery of portraits of George Washington; the Long Room, the site of General George Washington's famous farewell dinner; the Clinton Room, a recreation of a federalist style dining room; the McEntee Gallery, depicting the history of the Sons of the Revolution; the Davis Education Center (Flag Gallery); and a number of other galleries and spaces used for periodic exhibitions. In 2014, for example, the museum exhibited 27 maps from the 1700 and 1800s, including a never before seen map from 1804 depicting the United States' postal routes.[21]

The building served as the location of the General Society, Sons of the Revolution (a heritage organization similar to and competing with the "Sons of the American Revolution") office until 2002, when the General Society moved to Independence, Missouri. The Fraunces museum maintains several galleries of art and artifacts about the Revolution including the McEntee "Sons of the Revolution" Gallery that displays much of the history of the Society.[22]

The Tavern was used as a filming location in Two Weeks Notice.

See also


George Clinton Room at Fraunces Tavern in New York City

George Clinton Room at the Fraunces Tavern museum

Dining room at Fraunces Tavern

Dining room at Fraunces Tavern

Fraunces Tavern plaque 01

Plaques at Fraunces Tavern

Fraunces Tavern sign detail

Fraunces Tavern sign

Samuel Fraunces Portrait circa 1770-85 from Fraunces Tavern

Portrait of Samuel Fraunces (c.1770-1785), Fraunces Tavern Museum


  1. ^ a b "Fraunces Tavern Block". Washington: National Register of Historic Places. April 28, 1977. Retrieved September 23, 2009.
  2. ^ a b "Fraunces Tavern Block Historic District" (PDF). New York: New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission. August 1, 2005. Retrieved September 23, 2009.
  3. ^ "Fraunces Tavern". Washington: National Register of Historic Places. March 6, 2008. Retrieved September 23, 2009.
  4. ^ "Founders of Sons Saved Fraunces Tavern". New York: Sons of the Revolution in the State of New York Inc. Retrieved October 22, 2009.
  5. ^ "The Happy Hour Guys at Fraunces Tavern". San Bruno, Calif.: YouTube LLC. February 7, 2008. Retrieved September 15, 2009.
  6. ^ "Fraunces Tavern: Hangout of Sons Of Liberty; Hosted Washington, Several Cabinet Departments". New York: Eric Kramer and Carol Sletten. Retrieved October 22, 2009.
  7. ^ "Old buildings of New York City: With some notes regarding their origin and occupants". New York: Brentano's. 1907. Retrieved September 23, 2009.
  8. ^ Wikisource-logo.svg Rines, George Edwin, ed. (1920). "Fraunces' Tavern" . Encyclopedia Americana.
  9. ^ "Rough Crossing: The Slaves, the British, and the American Revolution". London: BBC Books. August 9, 2005. Retrieved October 21, 2009.
  10. ^ "Why Washington Wept". The New York Sun. New York: TWO SL LLC. December 4, 2007. Retrieved December 29, 2009.
  11. ^ "Sneek Peek at 2008". Fraunces Tavern Museum. New York: Sons of the Revolution in the State of New York Inc. Retrieved December 29, 2009.
  12. ^ "Liberty's Kids, episode 38 "The Man Who Wouldn't Be King"". San Bruno, Calif.: YouTube LLC. December 26, 2009. Retrieved December 29, 2009.
  13. ^
  14. ^ "Fraunces Tavern". New York: Tom Fletcher. Retrieved September 11, 2009.
  15. ^ Henry Collins Brown (1920). Valentine's City of New York. LCCN 20005206. Retrieved January 29, 2014.
  16. ^ "New York City's Financial District in Vintage Postcards". Mount Pleasant, S.C.: Arcadia Publishing. May 23, 2000. Retrieved October 21, 2009.
  17. ^ "AIA Guide to New York City, Fourth Ed". New York: Random House Inc. June 27, 2000. Retrieved October 21, 2009.
  18. ^ "Fraunces Tavern". Washington: National Register of Historic Places. March 6, 2008.
  19. ^ Mara Bovsun (January 21, 2012). "Justice Story: FALN bomb kills 4 at Fraunces Tavern, where George Washington said farewell to troops". NY Daily News. Retrieved April 17, 2013.
  20. ^ Edward D. Reuss. "Terrorism in New York". Retrieved April 17, 2013.
  21. ^
  22. ^ "Fraunces Tavern". San Bruno, Calif.: YouTube LLC. November 2, 2009. Retrieved December 6, 2009.

External links

Black Admiral

For the first African-American U.S. Navy admiral, see Samuel Gravely.

"Black Admiral" is the colloquial name for a Revolutionary War-era U.S. painting of unknown provenance that appears to depict a black man in U.S. naval uniform. In 2006, it was revealed that this 18th-century painting was merely a white sailor overlaid in the mid-to-late 20th century with African features.

The painting has often been featured in U.S. books and exhibitions on African-American history and the American Revolution, as it was thought to show a real black sailor, possibly belonging to a crew that had evacuated General George Washington from Long Island after the Battle of Brooklyn. For example, the painting appears in Gary B. Nash's book The Unknown American Revolution (2005), where it is identified as Black Privateer, ca. 1780, with the caption: "This black sailor very likely served on a privateer that took many enemy prizes, because only his share of the prize money would have allowed him to dress in such finery" (p. 227).

In 2006, however, the painting's owner, Alexander McBurney, decided to have it restored before lending it to the Fraunces Tavern Museum as the centerpiece of its “Fighting for Freedom: Black Patriots and Loyalists” exhibition. McBurney had purchased the painting from an art dealer in 1975 for $1,300, and before restoring it had it assessed for insurance purposes at $300,000. He hired Peter Williams, an art conservator, for the task. The restoration revealed that the sailor in the original painting was actually white, but had been painted over, probably sometime in the early 1970s. The alteration was probably intentionally fraudulent, according to Williams, because steps were taken to obscure the freshness of the changes.

The painting's estimated market value has plummeted to $3,000, and McBurney decided to have it "restored" to the appearance of the Black Admiral and keep it as a family keepsake.

Broad Street (Manhattan)

Broad Street is a narrow street located in the Financial District in the New York City borough of Manhattan. It stretches from South Street to Wall Street.

Originally the Broad Canal in New Amsterdam drawing from the East River, the canal was filled in 1676 after numerous fruit and vegetable vendors made it difficult for boats to enter the canal. Early establishments on Broad Street in the 1600s included the Fraunces Tavern and the Royal Exchange. Later on the area became the center of financial activity, and all smaller buildings in turn were replaced with grand banks and stock exchange buildings. Most of the structures that stand today date from the turn of the 20th century, along with more modern buildings constructed after the 1950s.

David Granger (bobsleigh)

David Granger (January 26, 1903 – September 27, 2002) was an American bobsledder and businessman who competed in the late 1920s. He won a silver medal in the five-man bobsleigh event at the 1928 Winter Olympics in St. Moritz. He died in New York City.

Granger graduated from Phillips Exeter Academy and Yale, and attended Christ's College, Cambridge. He married in 1950 and had a son.He held a New York Stock Exchange seat for longer than anyone else in history - from 1926 until his death in 2002. He joined his father's Wall Street firm, Sulzbacher, Granger & Co. (now a part of Ingalls & Snyder), at age 23 and purchased his seat for $143,000. He still went to work regularly until his health began to fail two years before his death, by which time he already held his longevity record.He served in World War II, rising to the rank of major and earning the Order of the British Empire for helping supply Britain with war planes. He was injured in the 1975 bombing of Fraunces Tavern.He served on the board of the Museum of the City of New York and as a trustee of the Cathedral of St. John the Divine. He also was a director of the English-Speaking Union.


Drowne and popular variant Drown are surnames which originated in Yorkshire, England. Many branches of this family dropped the E during the late 18th century as a part of the American Spelling Reform movement, forming the surname Drown. It is possibly derived from the Middle English word "drane", or drone, the male honey bee.

The first Drowne/Drown in North America was Leonard Drowne (1646–1729) who came from Penryn, Cornwall to what was then part of Kittery in Massachusetts soon after the Restoration (England) of the monarchy in 1660. Leonard, a ship-wright, established a shipyard near Sturgeon Creek in what is now Eliot, York County, Maine. Leonard married Sarah Abbott of Portsmouth, New Hampshire around 1675.

Leonard helped organize and build the first Baptist Church in Maine in 1682. During King William's War, many Maine towns were raided and English settlements were massacred by the Wabanaki people in conjunction with the French. In 1696, 28 members of the Baptist Church moved to Charleston, South Carolina and established the first Baptist church there while the Drownes moved to Boston, Massachusetts in 1699, due to the ongoing war and violence. After Sarah Abbott died, Leonard married his also-widowed sister-in law, Mary (Abbott) Caley. This marriage was performed by the Rev. Cotton Mather in Boston, November 4, 1707. Leonard Drowne died in Boston, October 31, 1729. Leonard Drowne and other early members of the family are buried in Copps Hill Cemetery in Boston.

Shem Drowne, colonial American weather vane maker, son of Leonard Drowne

Solomon Drowne, American Revolutionary War surgeon, grandson of Leonard Drowne

Henry Thayer Drowne, President of National Fire Insurance Company of New York, grandson of Solomon and President of the New York Genealogical and Biographical Society

Henry Russell Drowne, son of Henry Thayer Drowne, New York businessman of Lawrie, Mann & Drowne, an officer of Sons of the Revolution in New York State, American Numismatic Society, Society of the Cincinnati, New-York Historical Society, New York Genealogical and Biographical Society, and author of books on genealogy and Fraunces Tavern.

Frederick Drowne, an officer in the American Revolution and Representative to the General Court of Massachusetts from Rohobeth, Massachusetts from 1787-1781 and 1799–1804 and delegate of the Massachusetts Ratifying Convention of the U.S. Constitution in 1788

Samuel Drowne, American Revolutionary War soldier and colonial silversmith from Portsmouth, New Hampshire

Edwin G. Burrows

Edwin G. "Ted" Burrows (May 15, 1943 – May 4, 2018) was a Distinguished Professor of History at Brooklyn College. He is the co-author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Gotham: A History of New York City to 1898 (1998), and author of Forgotten Patriots: The Untold Story of American Prisoners During the Revolutionary War, (2008), which won the 2009 Fraunces Tavern Museum Book Award.

Burrows received his B.A. from the University of Michigan in 1964, and his Ph.D. from Columbia University in 1973, where he studied under Eric McKitrick. The same year, he began teaching at Brooklyn College, where his course on the History of New York City was one of the college's most popular offerings. He resided in Northport, New York on Long Island. Burrows died at the age of 74 in May 2018.

Fuerzas Armadas de Liberación Nacional Puertorriqueña

The Fuerzas Armadas de Liberación Nacional (English: Armed Forces of National Liberation, FALN) was a Puerto Rican clandestine paramilitary organization that, through direct action, advocated complete independence for Puerto Rico. It carried out more than 130 bomb attacks in the United States between 1974 and 1983, including a 1975 bombing of the Fraunces Tavern in New York City that killed four people.The FALN was led by Filiberto Ojeda Ríos and served as the predecessor of the Boricua Popular Army. Several of the organization's members were arrested and convicted for conspiracy to commit robbery and for firearms and explosives violations. On August 11, 1999 United States President Bill Clinton offered clemency to sixteen of the convicted militants under the condition that they renounce any kind of violent manifestation. This decision drew criticism towards the Clinton administration from figures including the Office of the United States Attorney, the FBI, and the United States Congress.

George Washington's resignation as commander-in-chief

George Washington's resignation as commander-in-chief marked the end of Washington's military service in the American Revolutionary War and his return to civilian life at Mount Vernon. His voluntary action has been described as "one of the nation's great acts of statesmanship" and helped establish the precedent of civilian control of the military. After the Treaty of Paris ending the war had been signed on September 3, 1783, and after the last British troops left New York City on November 25, Washington resigned his commission as commander-in-chief of the Continental Army to the Congress of the Confederation, then meeting in the Maryland State House at Annapolis, Maryland, on December 23 of the same year. This followed his farewell to the Continental Army, November 2 at Rockingham near Princeton, New Jersey, and his farewell to his officers, December 4 at Fraunces Tavern in New York City. Washington's resignation was depicted by John Trumbull in 1824 with the life-size painting, General George Washington Resigning His Commission, now on view in the United States Capitol rotunda.

Jane Tuers

Jannetje Van Reypen Tuers was a patriot during the American Revolutionary War and had a role in confirming information about a British conspiracy with Benedict Arnold to take over West Point.

Jane and her husband Nicholas Tuers ((1736/37-1815) (or Toers) lived as farmers in Bergen Township, New Jersey (now known as Jersey City). While selling farm goods in British-occupied Manhattan, she spoke with Samuel Fraunces, the owner of the Fraunces Tavern. He informed Tuers that British soldiers were in his tavern toasting General Benedict Arnold who was to deliver West Point to the British. Tuers informed her brother Daniel Van Reypen about the conspiracy. Van Reypen rode to Hackensack to meet with General Anthony Wayne. Wayne sent Van Reypen to inform General George Washington of the conspiracy. This information added to what was suspected of Benedict Arnold. The arrest of John André a few days later confirmed the conspiracy.

Jane Tuers died in 1834 and was buried in the Old Bergen Church Cemetery. The house that she lived in was located on Bergen Avenue across from the Tise Tavern. The house survived until 1894, when it was demolished to make room for the construction of the old Fourth Regiment Armory. Streets near Bergen Square bear both the Tuers and Van Reypen family name.Name variations:

Jannetje Cornelisen Van Riper

Jannetje Van Ripen

Jannetje Van Reypen Toers.

John E. Ferling

John E. Ferling (born 1940) is a professor emeritus of history at the University of West Georgia. As a leading historian in the American Revolution and founding era, he has appeared in television documentaries on PBS, the History Channel, C-SPAN Book TV, and the Learning Channel.

Knox Trophy

The Knox Trophy is the oldest military award of the United States Military Academy at West Point. The award was established on October 8, 1910 and is given annually by the Sons of the Revolution in the State of New York to the United States Military Academy cadet with the highest rating for military efficiency. Named in honor of General Henry Knox, the first Secretary of War, the original trophy, made by Tiffany & Company was originally kept on display in the office of the West Point Commandant.

The Knox Trophy celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2010.

List of the oldest restaurants in the United States

This list of the oldest restaurants in the United States includes 18 currently-operating restaurants that were founded prior to the year 1900. Two-thirds of the establishments are located in the Northeastern United States, ten of them predate the Civil War, and two precede the Revolutionary War.

Pearl Street (Manhattan)

Pearl Street is a street in the Financial District in Lower Manhattan, running northeast from Battery Park to the Brooklyn Bridge with an interruption at Fulton Street, where Pearl Street's alignment west of Fulton Street shifts one block south of its alignment east of Fulton Street, then turning west and terminating at Centre Street.

Revolutionary War Door

Revolutionary War Door is an artwork by American sculptor Thomas Crawford, located on the United States Capitol House of Representatives wing east front in Washington, D.C., United States. This sculptured door was surveyed in 1993 as part of the Smithsonian's Save Outdoor Sculpture! program.

Samuel Fraunces

Samuel Fraunces (1722/23 – October 10, 1795) was an American restaurateur and the owner/operator of Fraunces Tavern in New York City. During the Revolutionary War, he provided for prisoners held during the seven-year British occupation of New York City (1776-1783), and claimed to have been a spy for the American side. At the end of the war, it was at Fraunces Tavern that General George Washington said farewell to his officers. Fraunces later served as steward of Washington's presidential household in New York City (1789–1790) and Philadelphia (1791–1794).

Since the mid-19th century, there has been a dispute over Fraunces's racial identity. According to his 1983 biographer, Kym S. Rice: "During the Revolutionary era, Fraunces was commonly referred to as 'Black Sam.' Some have taken references such as these as an indication that Fraunces was a black man. ...[W]hat is known of his life indicates he was a white man." Some 19th- and 20th-century sources described Fraunces as "a negro man" (1838), "swarthy" (1878), "mulatto" (1916), "Negro" (1916), "coloured" (1930), "fastidious old Negro" (1934), and "Haitian Negro" (1962), but most of these date from more than a century after his death. As Rice noted in her Documentary History of Fraunces Tavern (1985): "Other than the appearance of the nickname, there are no known references where Fraunces was described as a black man" during his lifetime.The familiar oil-on-canvas portrait, long identified as depicting Samuel Fraunces and exhibited at Fraunces Tavern since 1913, was recently discredited by new evidence. German historian Arthur Kuhle found a portrait of the same sitter in a Dresden museum in 2017, and suspects that the sitter had been a member of Prussian king Frederick the Great's royal court.

Samuel Osgood House

The Samuel Osgood House (demolished in 1856), also known as the Walter Franklin House, was an eighteenth-century mansion at the northeast corner of Pearl and Cherry Streets in Manhattan. It served as the first Presidential Mansion, housing George Washington, his family, and household staff, from April 23, 1789, to February 23, 1790, during New York City's two-year term as the national capital.

The owner, Samuel Osgood, was a Massachusetts politician and lawyer, who settled in New York City. He married Maria Bowne Franklin, widow of Walter Franklin, the merchant who had built the house in 1770. Congress rented it for Washington's use, and the President-Elect moved in a week before his April 30, 1789, inauguration as first President of the United States. In addition to living quarters, the Osgood House contained the President's private office (the equivalent of the Oval Office) and the public business office (the equivalent of the West Wing), making it the first seat of the executive branch of the federal government.

The Samuel Osgood Papers, at the New York Historical Society, list purchases made to prepare the mansion for Washington occupancy.

I went the morning before the General's arrival to look at it. The best of furniture in every room, and the greatest quantity of plate and china I ever saw; the whole of the first and second stories is papered and the floors covered with the richest kinds of Turkey and Wilton carpets. There is scarcely anything talked about now but General Washington and the Palace.

Steward Samuel Fraunces, former owner of nearby Fraunces Tavern, managed a household staff of about 20: wage workers, indentured servants, and enslaved servants. Slavery was legal in New York, and Washington brought seven enslaved Africans from Mount Vernon to work in his presidential household: William Lee, Christopher Sheels, Giles, Paris, Austin, Moll, and Oney Judge.Two of Martha Washington's grandchildren were part of the First Family: Nelly Custis (b. 1779) and "Wash" Custis (b. 1781).Soon after his inauguration, Washington became seriously ill with a tumor on his thigh (possibly caused by anthrax poisoning). Cherry Street was cordoned off to prevent his being disturbed.The house was rented for one year at an annual rent of $845, but the president vacated it after ten months when a larger residence became available. Washington moved to the Alexander Macomb House at 39–41 Broadway, which he occupied from February 23 to August 30, 1790.

Under the July 1790 Residence Act, the national capital moved to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, for a 10-year period, while the permanent national capital was under construction in the District of Columbia.

The Osgood House was demolished in 1856. A bronze plaque where Pearl Street crosses under the Brooklyn Bridge approach marks its location.

Sons of the Revolution

Sons of the Revolution is a hereditary society which was founded in 1876 and educates the public about the American Revolution. The General Society Sons of the Revolution headquarters is a Pennsylvania non-profit corporation located at Williamsburg, Virginia. The Society is governed by a board of managers, an executive committee, officers, standing committees and their members, and staff. The General Society includes 28 State Societies and chapters in the United States, as well as Europe.It describes its purpose as:

To perpetuate the memory of the men, who in the military, naval and civil service of the Colonies and of the Continental Congress by their acts or counsel, achieved the Independence of the Country, and to further the proper celebration of the anniversaries of the birthday of Washington, and of prominent events connected with the War of the Revolution; to collect and secure for preservation the rolls, records, and other documents relating to that period; to inspire the members of the Society with the patriotic spirit of the forefathers; to promote the feeling of friendship among them.

Sons of the Revolution should not be confused with Sons of the American Revolution, a separate organization which was founded on April 30, 1889, by the New Jersey businessman William Osborn McDowell.

The Great Saunter

The Great Saunter is a daylong hike that explores Manhattan’s 32-mile shoreline, visiting more than 20 parks and promenades of Manhattan Island. Manhattan's waterfront rim has evolved since Shorewalkers Inc., a nonprofit environmental and walking group, began fighting for a public shoreline walkway in 1982. Now the path is nearly contiguous. The Saunter takes place on the first Saturday in May, recognized by the NYC as Great Saunter Day.

The Great Saunter has received support from Bill de Blasio, Michael Bloomberg and other mayors of NYC as well as Manhattan Borough Presidents Scott Stringer, Ruth Messinger and Gale Brewer. Other supporters include Representatives Charles Rangel, Carolyn Maloney, and Jerrold Nadler; state legislator Dan O’Donnel ; NYC Parks Commissioner Adrian Benepe; NYC councilors and community boards; and legendary folk singer Pete Seeger, who co-wrote the "Shorewalkers' Saunter Song".The walk originally started at the South Street Seaport., but the area was damaged during Hurricane Sandy in 2012. The Great Saunter now starts and finishes at Fraunces Tavern.In 2018 about 1700 people participated in the Great Saunter.

The Great Saunter was first explored and walked by Shorewalkers founder Cy A Adler in 1984. Adler wrote a book about this called Walking Manhattan’s Rim, the Great Saunter, published by Green Eagle Press. In 1984 the first walk had only a few people who had to climb fences and go through holes along the deteriorating waterfront which had lost much of its shipping due to the Container Revolution. Because of the publicity and visibility of The Great Saunter, the Manhattan waterfront has been gifted a number of improvements: new parks such as the Hudson River Park and Riverside Park South, and the refurbishment of East River Park, Riverside Park, Inwood Hill Park and others parks along the shore.

Thomas Hickey (soldier)

Thomas Hickey (hanged on June 28, 1776) was a Continental Army soldier in the American Revolutionary War, and the first person executed for "mutiny, sedition, and treachery". Born in Ireland, he came to America as a soldier in the British Army and fought as personal assistant to Major General William Johnson in the Seven Years' War, but deserted to the other side when the Revolution broke out. He became part of the Life Guard, which protected General George Washington, his staff, and the Continental Army's payroll. Hickey was jailed for passing counterfeit money. He was tried and executed for mutiny and sedition, and he may have been involved in an assassination plot against George Washington in 1776.

Washington made a general announcement:

The unhappy fate of Thomas Hickey, executed this day for mutiny, sedition, and treachery, the General hopes will be a warning to every soldier in the Army to avoid those crimes, and all others, so disgraceful to the character of a soldier, and pernicious to his country, whose pay he receives and bread he eats. And in order to avoid those crimes, the most certain method is to keep out of the temptation of them, and particularly to avoid lewd women, who, by the dying confession of this poor criminal, first led him into practices which ended in an untimely and ignominious death.

White Matlack

White Matlack (October 7, 1745; Haddonfield, New Jersey – January 7, 1824) to Elizabeth Martha Burr Haines and Timothy Matlack: a couple that had both lost their first spouses. His grandparents were William Matlack and Mary Hancock; and Henry Burr and Elizabeth Hudson. His siblings were Sybil, Elizabeth, Titus, Seth, Josiah and Timothy Matlack. He was a New York Quaker and abolitionist.

He married Mary Hawhurst on March 6, 1768. They had four children; White, Timothy, Mary, and Hannah.White was a watchmaker and silversmith in New York City from around 1769 to 1775. In 1775, he also worked in Philadelphia. Then he ran a brewery located not far from the Fraunces Tavern. By the 1780s he moved into steel manufacturing.In 1782, he and Isaac Howell signed a document titled The memorial and remonstrance of Isaac Howell and White Matlack, in behalf of themselves, and others, who have been disowned by the people called Quakers, &c. White and his brother Timothy had been disowned by Orthodox Quakers for their support of the American Revolution. They formed a group with others called the Society of Free Quakers.In 1786, he signed a letter to the Senate and assembly of the State of New York, against the shipping of African slaves through the port of New York.Three years later he became a member of the New York Manumission Society. In 1787, the society founded the African Free School.

He died at Bay Side, near Flushing on Long Island, aged 80.

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