Wednesday, October 25, 2006

More downtown stuff

The old U.S. Customs House. Now shared by the Museum of the American Indian and the U.S. Bankruptcy Court.

Bowling Green Park. America's first public park. Founded in 1733. It was here where Peter Minuit bought the island of Manhattan for the equivalent of $24 worth of beads. Talk about a real estate bargain. The fence around the park was built in 1773 and is still in service. As an added piece of trivia, the city had to pass an anit-graffiti statute because the colonists kept defacing the statue of King George that at one time was in the park. The statue was toppled on July 9, 1776 after the public reading of the Declaration of Independence. According to local legend, the statue was melted down and made into bullets for the American revolutionary army. Good stuff!

For all you Moby Dick fans out there :)

To give you an idea of the age of this place.

There is a lot of history down here. It seems that every time a construction project begins, some piece of the past is discovered. From what I heard, a pre-revolutionary wall, probably part of the city's early defenses, was just unearthed during the construction near battery park across the street. I love this sort of stuff. I think that it's important for us to know where we come from. See this site for details. Oh, I was right by the way. It is a new subway tunnel being dug across the street.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I grew up in New Bedford, Ma (lived there for 33yrs) so I had no choice but to be a Moby Dick fan!!

"at the height of the whaling industry, New Bedford was one of the richest per capita cities in the world. The products of whaling - particularly whale oil - were essential to American society and industry."

I can remember going yearly on school feild trips to the New Bedford Whaling Museum.

4:05 PM  

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