Tuesday, September 02, 2014

Roadie: Lower Manhattan, NYC

The East Coast Memorial in Battery Park, New York. (8/29/14)
Delivering my stepson back to Columbia University for his sophomore year created a great opportunity for my wife and I to check out some touristy, historic locales in lower Manhattan. As often proves to be the case, my wife Anne was very knowledgeable about the historical significance and background of many of the places, all of which I had not previously been to.

Granite pylons bearing names of fallen
American soldiers. (8/29/14)
Except where otherwise noted, the details and information included in this post are pulled directly from Wikipedia entries. Fortunately, while we were touring, Anne shared many of these historical anecdotes and stories to make the visit more meaningful. My inability to properly capture what she shared (as well as my desire not to be inaccurate) lead me to use Wikipedia.

The East Coast Memorial, pictured above and below, is a World War II war memorial in Battery Park, New York City. The memorial commemorates U.S. servicemen who died in coastal waters of the western Atlantic Ocean during World War II. A total of 4,609 names are inscribed on both sides of eight 19-foot-tall granite pylons. The pylons are arranged in two rows of four each. Between the two rows stands a bronze statue of an eagle, erected on a black granite pedestal. The eagle faces the Statue of Liberty in New York harbor.

The eagle statue was created by Albino Manca, an Italian-born sculptor. (8/29/14)
Another of the impressive statues in Battery Park is The Immigrants by Luis Sanguino. The sculpture is located at the south end of the Eisenhower Mall in Battery Park near Castle Clinton, which served as a processing facility for newly arrived immigrants from 1855 to 1890, when construction began on a larger, more remote facility at nearby Ellis Island.

The Immigrants in Battery Park. (8/29/14)
Sculptor Luis Sanguino (b. 1934) celebrates the diversity of New York City and the struggle of immigrants in this heroic-sized bronze figural group. The sculpture depicts figures of various ethnic groups and eras, including an Eastern European Jew, a freed African slave, a priest, and a worker. The figures’ expressive poses emphasize the struggle and toil inherent in the experience of the immigrant or dislocated person. (Credit: NYC Battery Park Website)

Close-up from front of The Immigrants in Battery Park. (8/29/14)
Bowling Green is a small public park in Lower Manhattan at the foot of Broadway next to the site of the original Dutch fort of New Amsterdam. Built in 1733, originally including a bowling green, it is the oldest public park in New York City and is surrounded by its original 18th century fence. Bowling Green Fence and Park is listed on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.

New York Landmark signage at Bowling Green fence. (8/29/14)
In 1773, the city passed an anti-graffiti and anti-desecration law to counter vandalism against the monument. A protective cast-iron fence, which still stands, was built along the perimeter of the park. On July 9, 1776, after the Declaration of Independence was read to Washington's troops at the current site of City Hall, local Sons of Liberty rushed down Broadway to Bowling Green, where they toppled the statue. The fence post finials of cast-iron crowns on the protective fence were sawed off, with the saw marks still visible today. The event is one of the most enduring images in the city's history.

It is still possible to feel the grooves where the cast iron
crowns were sawed off! (8/29/14)
The iconic New York Stock Exchange facade... 'nuff said! (8/29/14)
Trinity Church, at 75 Broadway in lower Manhattan, is a historic, active, well-endowed parish church in the Episcopal Diocese of New York. Trinity Church is near the intersection of Wall Street and Broadway, in New York City, New York.

Trinity Church in lower Manhattan. (8/29/14)
Trinity Church. (8/29/14)
Trinity Church has three sets of impressive bronze doors conceived by Richard Morris Hunt. These date from 1893 and were produced by Karl Bitter(east door), J. Massey Rhind (south door) and Charles Henry Niehaus (north door). The doors were a gift from William Waldorf Astor, 1st Viscount Astorin memory of John Jacob Astor III. The north and east door each consist of six panels from Church history or the Bible and the south door depicts the history of New York in its six panels.

The North Door of Trinity Church. (8/29/14)
One of three burial grounds closely associated with Trinity Church. The Trinity Churchyard, at Wall Street and Broadway, in which Alexander Hamilton, Robert Fulton, ands John Watts, among others, are buried.

The Trinity Churchyard. (8/29/14)
The final resting place of Founding Father Alexander Hamilton. (8/29/14)
Alexander Hamilton (January 11, 1755 or 1757 – July 12, 1804) was a founding father of the United States, chief of staff to General George Washington, one of the most influential interpreters and promoters of the U.S. Constitution, the founder of the nation's financial system, and the founder of the first American political party.

The tomb of Robert Fulton. (8/29/14)
Robert Fulton (November 14, 1765 – February 24, 1815) was a colonial American engineer and inventor who is widely credited with developing the first commercially successful steamboat. In 1800, he was commissioned by Napoleon Bonaparte to design the Nautilus, which was the first practical submarine in history. He is also credited with inventing some of the world's earliest naval torpedoes for use by the British Royal Navy.
John Watts grave at Trinity Churchyard. (8/29/14)
John Watts (August 27, 1749 New York City - September 3, 1836) was an American lawyer and politician from New York City who represented New York in the U.S. House.

Anne, Queen of Great Britain, increased the parish's land holdings to 215 acres (870,000 m2) in 1705. Later, in 1709, William Huddleston founded Trinity School as the Charity School of the church, and classes were originally held in the steeple of the church. In 1754, King's College (now Columbia University) was chartered by King George II of Great Britain and instruction began with eight students in a school building near the church.

Ironically, we conclude our tour of lower Manhattan with a nod to where our day began: at the original site of what would become the Columbia University where we left Gregory to acquaint himself with his new dorm room just a few hours earlier.

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