On December 18, 1836, Henry Van Der Lyn penned a letter to his nephew describing a visit to the Georgetown home of Col. George Corbin Washington, with a former student, Congressman Aaron Ward. As they prepared to leave, George Washington's grand-nephew called them back to show them "some relicks" of his esteemed great uncle. In his letter, Van Der Lyn then gushes about the manuscripts, including Washington's ciphering book, surveying book, a journal of the 1745 expedition to...Read More
Sir Henry Clinton's hair powder duty certificate, 1795 (Donald F. Clark Collection, MS 118)
This 1795 certificate documents that Sir Henry Clinton, the general and former Commander-in-Chief for North America of the British Army during the Revolution, paid the hair powder duty instituted in Great Britain in that year. The duty itself was one guinea, spawning the nickname "guinea pig" for those who paid it.
It may look unassuming, but this document marks a pivotal moment in...Read More
If you haven't already heard, May is bike month so it's the perfect time to talk about an interesting 1898-1899 account book that we have here at the Society.
Cyclists during the Golden Age of the bicycle outside Grant's Tomb on Riverside Drive, 1898. Subject File (PR 068)
The safety bicycle -- the design of those ridden in the photograph above -- was first produced in the 1870s and began to replace the penny farthing (two wheels...Read More
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New-York Historical Society
170 Central Park West
at Richard Gilder Way (77th Street)
New York, NY 10024