Stokes, I. N. Phelps The iconography of Manhattan Island 1498-1909 (v. 5)

(New York :  Robert H. Dodd,  1915-1928.)



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ever reserved for the purpose of erecting public buildings, and such
works of defence as the Legislature shall from time to tirae direct,"
and that certain other lands near by shaU be "vested in the mayor,
aldermen and commonalty ot the city of New York, to remain for
the purpose of erecting public buildings, and works of defence there¬
on; but without any power to dispose thereof, for any use or pur¬
pose whatsoever, and without any power of selling any part
thereof." The principal landmarks mentioned in the description
of the lands are the "dweUing-house of Captain Archibald Ken¬
nedy," the "old secretary's office on Whitehall Street," the ground
of Captain Thoraas RandaU, and tbe "lots which tront on Pearl
Street,'" The law also authorises the city corporation "to cause the
said Fort George to be demolished, and the ground whereon the
said Fort stands to be leveUed, and also to cause a bulk head to be
erected [see Mr 26], from the end of the bulk head latdy erected
by them, continuing the same to the south-west bastion ot the
Battery aforesaid; and lo sell and dispose ot the buildings and ma¬
terials of the said Fort, and to apply the monies arising therefrom,
towards tbe erecting the bulk head aforesaid." Gerard Bancker,
Richard Varick, and John Watts are appointed commissioners "to
cause a proper house and other necessary buildings, to be erected 00
sorae part ot the lands, in the first enacting clause in this act men¬
tioned, tor the use of the governraent of this State; and to be ap¬
plied to the temporary use and accoramodation of the President
of the United Statea of America, during such time as the Congress
of the United States shall hold their sessions In the city of New-
York," and the state treasurer is empowered to pay them £8,000
"for the purposes aforesaid,"^—Laws ofN. Y., 13th sess,, chap. 25.
See also Pl. 46A-C, Vol, I, On March 24 (q.v.), the commissioners
advertised for plans tor the government house.

The New York Manufacturing Society is incorporated. Its
object is "furnishing eraployraent to the honest industrious poor."
The company's stock is liraited to £50,000,—Laws ofN. Y. (1790),
chap. 26 (Greenleaf, II: 309). It opened a workshop, in which
were a carding-machine and two spinning jennies, and eraployed
altogether 130 spinners and 14 weavers. "Jennies continued to be
used to spin wool and to spin flax for sailcloth, but in the raore
rapidly organized and centralized cotton raanutacture they were
displaced almost immediately hy Arkwright machinery" (see
1793),—Clark,HiV. of Manufactures In the V. S. 1607-1860, 192.

Washington is visited "by a Mr. Warner Miflin, one of the
People called Quakers; active in pursuit of the Measures laid before
Congresa for emancipating the Slaves."—Waskingon's Diary (Los¬
sing ed,), 105. These measures produced much agitation in congresa
and throughout the country.—See the Gaz. of the U. S., passim.

The common council appoints acomraittee "to view the Land at
the Fort k Battery k report the necessary Measures to be taken
by this Board with respect to the IeveUing of the same."—M. C. C.
(1784-1831), I;  531.   See, further, Mr 26.

The common council orders that Mr. Skaats "deposit the Key
of the Eichange Room in a proper House in the Vidnity so that
access may be had to the BeU and the Cap' of tbe Watchman is
directed to dispatch one of his Men to ring it immediatdy on
tbe discovery ot Fire."—M. C. C. (1784-1831), I: 531, On May
14, payment ot £4:10 was made "for hanging the heU in the
Exchange."—Ibid., I:   547.

The common council orders that the alderman and assistant
ot the West Ward "direct a Bulkhead to be erected to prevent
the running out ot the Earth in the upper part of Greenwich
Su-eet."—M. C. C. (1784-1831), I: 531-32,

"Resolved That the Committee of Leases be empowered to
raake, or confirm an Eichange with the Lutheran Congregation
tor Part of theit Ground near Rector's Stieet,"—-Trin, Min,
(MS.).  See Jl 12.

Richard Varick, John Watts, and Gerard Bancker, "corarais¬
sioners appointed by a law of this State [aee Mr 16) to buUd a
Government House on the ground where Fort George now stands,"
advertise that "tbey are desirous of receiring plana tor a house
to contain, a room for the reception of the Legislature on public
business, and drawing and dining roora for special occasions; 3
drawing and dining room for private use, a room tor a Ubrary,
together with other requisite appartraents and accommodations.
It Is at present proposed to tront the house towards the Broad-
Way, and that the extent in front shaU be about eighty feet, and
the depth as shall be found necessary.

"The sooner the plans shaU be ddivered is the more acceptable.

"Any person or persons willing to contract for the delivery of   Mar.
timber, scantling, shingles, bricks or other materials will be pleased    24
to deU ver their proposals in writing at the office of the state treasurer
No. 8 Great Dock-street."—Daily Adv., Mr 24, 1790.  See Mr 26,

Prof. John C. Van Dyke aaya: " at twenty-seven John Mc Comb
designed the faf ade of Government House in New York."—Rutgers
College Pubs., No. 14, entitled Queen's Building, Rutgers College,
1809-1909, p. 24. However, tbe plan and devation raade by
Mc Comb were evidently rejected, as they do not correspond with
those ot the Government House aa eiecuted. They are repro¬
duced as A, Pis. lo-a and 10-b, Vol. III. The architect of the
building has not been positively identified but was probably James
Robinson.^See descrips. of PI. 75, I: 460-61, and A. PI, 10-a,
HI: 869-70.

The new Trinity Church Is opened and consecrated, the service 25
being attended hy Pres, Wasbington, the bishops and dergy ot
aU denominations, severd raerabers of congress, and other public
officers, "together with an iramense concourse of citizens." The
sermon is preached by the Rev. Mr. Beach.—Dally Adv., Mr 26,
1790; descrips. of PI, 105, III: 607, and Pl. 122, III: 629. Wash¬
ington records bis occupying his pew for the firat lime on this
occasion, stating that it "was constructed, and set apart for the
President of the United Sts."—Diary of Waskington (i860), III.

A letter frora Albany contains the following: "I ara happy to 26
observe that the Legislature baa granted eight thousand pounda
for building a Governraent Houae [see Mr 16). I tear the sum wiU
be insufficient to do justice to the situation on which It is to be
placed, which, for ray own part, I conceive to he equal to any in

"I trust the Architect, who planned the Federal Building
[L'Enfant], will have an opportunity of displaying hia genioua
on the preaent occaaion; and, from the taste he has displayed in
the alterations and additions to the City Hall, I have no doubt
that he wIU erect an edifice which will do honour to the city of
New York,"—JV. Y. Daily Gaz., Ap 2, 1790.   See Ap 7.

The coraraon coundl, "conceiving it their Duty to use every "
Means in their Power to effect the compleat reraoval of the Earth
k Stone & IeveUing the Ground at the Fort k Battery ao aa to
accoraraodate the Building to be erected there for the uae of the
Governm* [see Mr 24) and also to continue the Wharf or Bulkhead,
in the River, to the Corner of the Battery at Whitehall Slip [aee
Mr. 16); And thia Board being at present destitute of the necessary
pecuniary Means for the purposes aforesaid," it ia resolved "that
an Application be made to the Legislature for raising the Sum ot
£5000 for the purposes afd in addition to the Sum directed by Law
for defraying tbe contingent Expences of this City this Year."
A petition to the legislature is drafted and agreed to for presenta¬
tion.—M. C. C. (1784-1831), I: 533. The legislature's perralssion
was granted on April 5 (q.v.).

The board appoints Tobias Van Zandt and George Janeway com¬
missioners "to superintend the taking down the Stone k removing
the Earth of the Fort—That they set apart k reserve such & so
much of the Stone as raay be necessary for the erection of the Gov*
House and that the residue of the Stone be sold under their im¬
mediate Inspection for the best price that may be had and that
they render an ace* thereof to this Board," They are allowed
10s. tor each day either ot them attends to this business, "to be
dirided between them."—Ibid., I:   534.   See, further, Ap 6,

Acting favourably on a petition ot the firemen, the common "
council agrees to allow a "complement" of ten raen for each
engine; because, in the case of the smallest engines, which are used
to approach nearest to a fire, "and are therefore best adapted for
the Leaders [hose] to convey Water through Windows and narrow
passes," only the firemen "are wiUing to support them, as it is at¬
tended by a general wetting by the Water which gushes out ot
the Seams."—M. C. C. (1784-1831), I:  533.

The legislature passes "An Act tor building a Bridge across 31
Haerlem River." Lewis Morris, his hdrs and assigns, are author¬
ised, "at his and their own eipence, to build a bridge from Haerlem
across Haerlem river to Morrisania." The dimensions specified In
the act are; Not less than 30 feet in width, " and between the cen¬
tre arches thereof, shall be an opening not less than twenty five
feet, over which shdl be a draw not less than twelve feet, for the
tree passage of vessds with filed standing masts." Tbe toll-ratea
are also prescribed,—Laws ofN. Y. (1790), chap. 37, Morris did
not huUd, but sought financial aid in 1792 hy proposing a plan ot
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