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5 New York Buildings That Cool America's History

'01.11.2019'

Source: nytimes.com

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In New York, about 700 of thousands of buildings. However, five of them better than others illustrate how this metropolis transformed from a Dutch colony into a world capital. This is stated in the article. New York Times.

Фото: Depositphotos

Federal Hall

26 Wall Street, Manhattan

“Do you know where Congress approved the Bill of Rights? Or where did the nation first discuss slavery? Or where did the Supreme Court first meet? It was not in Boston or Philadelphia. The federal government was formed in New York, ”the newspaper writes.

Today, the source emphasizes, New Yorkers are too absorbed in the present and the future, because few understand that their hometown was the first capital of America. And that these events became "a catalyst for the revival of the city after seven years of brutal British occupation."

The choice of place was not an accident, the publication emphasizes.

“This was the first and last time that the location of the national capital became hostage to the demands of a future cabinet member: John Jay agreed to become Secretary of State only if the Confederation Congress (the country's governing body in 1780's) leaves Trenton, New Jersey, and will be convened instead in New York, ”the article says.

Фото: Depositphotos

The old town hall has been renovated. George Washington was inaugurated. And during the 531 day, in the 1789 and 1790 years, the 95 members of Congress, many of whom had competing agendas, showed ingenuity and the skill of improvisation to create the “skeleton” of the new constitution.

After 1790, Congress temporarily fled to Philadelphia, and then to the banks of the Potomac River, liberating New York.

The Federal Hall soon became a dilapidated centuries-old relic, destroyed in 1812 and sold for scrap. However, in its place, by order of the federal government, a magnificent building was erected. The columned facade of the new structure reminded of Athenian democracy, and the Great Rotunda - of republican Rome.

This building was opened in the 1832 year as Customs - a monument to New York's superiority in maritime trade, since the money collected only from shipping was enough to support almost all the functions of the federal government.

This building was later converted and, after World War I, became the largest gold depository in the world.

Today, the Federal Hall is best known for its steps and the statue of George Washington.

Marble Palace

280 Broadway, Manhattan

By today's standards, this building in the Tribeca area, located north of City Hall Park, could be called inconspicuous. But in the middle of the 19th century, luxurious Italian design became one of the most famous places in the city.

The news of the death in 1876 of its owner, an Irish immigrant named Alexander Terney Stewart, occupied the front page of the New York Times, while on the editorial page of the publication it was written that Stewart “made the biggest fortune ever accumulated for all life".

By the way, it is Stuart, who was mentioned as “the most influential seller in New York in the 19th century” in the book “Invented Cities”, who is credited with creating the first department store in the country.

Broadway sign and red stop light in New York City at night

Thanks to the Erie Channel, New York flourished in the 1825 year when Stewart invested his small legacy in lace and other jewelry for women's clothing.

“What began as a modest haberdashery shop turned into a shopping center, lined with sparkling white marble. It was different from other modern Broadway buildings the color of the earth, turning a commercial enterprise into a state institution, and Stuart into an entrepreneurial prince, ”the newspaper writes.

After the death of its owner, this building became the headquarters of the New York newspaper The New York Sun.

By the way, even the death of Stuart became a sensation after the kidnappers stole his corpse and held him for ransom.

Armory of the 69 Regiment

Lexington Avenue, 68, Manhattan

A decade before the Armory of the 69 Regiment could have reviewed works of art from all over America and recognized New York as the country's cultural capital, the facade of this military training hall marked the opening of new architectural possibilities.

“The redoubt built in 1906 on Lexington Avenue and East 25 Street was designed as a bastion of fine arts in an era when other weapons models were still modeled after medieval fortresses,” the source observes.

The 69 Regiment was immortalized in the fight against the sixtieth by Robert Lee during the Civil War and in the poem about the First World War, The Fight against the Irish by Joyce Kilmer.

Designed by the sons of Richard Morris Hunt, whose father created the foundation for the Statue of Liberty and the entrance to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the armory itself was a work of art.

“Steel rafters supported a glass roof that bent 38 meters above a gigantic space of seven full-sized basketball courts,” the newspaper writes.

Soon, the giant hall will become a meeting room in Manhattan - a place for any purpose: from roller derby to the Niks games, and even a consultation center after the events of September 11.

Фото: Depositphotos

However, the arsenal will subsequently be canonized in the annals of culture by the International Exhibition of Contemporary Art, also known as the Armory Exhibition of the 1913 of the Year, at which about 1300 works of 300 artists were presented.

The organizers of the exhibition boasted the work of avant-garde artists, such as “Naked, Going Down the Stairs” by Marcel Duchamp and “Blue Nude” by Henri Matisse.

The innovation shocked viewers familiar with classical art, as well as the legislators of taste.

“An armory exhibition destroyed the power of the Academy,” one of the critics said of the show, which “shocked America.”

Bank of the United States

1254 South Boulevard, Bronx

People were poor when Joseph S. Marcus built this classic limestone building in 1921. Most became poorer ten years later when immigrants, working-class contributors, tried unsuccessfully to pull their savings from what Mr. Markus, the first US bank branch in the Bronx, had turned into.

The economist Milton Friedman in those days called this bank "pebbles that turn into an avalanche."

After the death of Marcus in 1927, his son Bernard and partner Saul Singer began a furious expansion, increasing the number of bank branches to 60, depositors to 400 thousands and shareholders to 18 thousands.

“However, they built a house of cards, created fictitious corporations, provided loans to bank employees to buy shares, and the company was mired in real estate investments,” the source said.

On 10 of December 1930, a nervous account holder attacked a cashier at a branch in the Bronx and demanded to buy his shares in the bank. He received money to save his shares, and not to cash them. Thus, a rumor spread around the city that the bank had abandoned its promise to buy them at the original price.

By noon, 3000 panicked depositors took their money from the bank.

Large financial institutions refused to save the US Bank - and it was closed. Bernard Marcus went to jail, and the building of the former bank became a laundry.

Old gym building, Lehman College

2851 Half Avenue, Bronx

In the middle of the 1940's, New York was so sure that the headquarters of the nascent United Nations would be located right here, that officials did not even bother to bring a site selection committee to London.

In fact, the commission liked the idea of ​​locating the UN headquarters here, but with one caveat: it should be located at least 40 km from the city.

“At the beginning of 1946, the green area near Greenwich, Connecticut, became a serious rival until its residents voted against even a friendly foreign invasion just three weeks before the first session of the Security Council in the country was supposed to take place,” the newspaper writes.

With the disappearance of alternative locations to accommodate, some US officials began to worry. The option to headquarters inside the city no longer seemed to them such a bad idea.

James Lyons, president of the Bronx area, proposed his own option - the Hunter College campus, which moved to the Bedford Park area in Manhattan in the mid-1930's.

College officials did not like this. They hoped that the campus would welcome students to their crowded classes after the war in the fall. But the city hall that controlled the college was victorious, and an army of carpenters, electricians, telephone installers, and other craftsmen rained down on the Hunter College gymnasium, while the State Department of Liquors gathered in an emergency session to provide in the newly renovated hall, which filled out by delegates, license.

On March 25 of 1946, the first meeting of the UN Security Council in the United States was convened here.

Фото: Depositphotos

However, before settling on the east side of Manhattan, thanks to John D. Rockefeller Jr., his son Nelson, and property developer William Zeckendorf, the General Assembly gathered at the New York pavilion of the 1939 World's Fair in Flushing Meadows, Queens.

Hunter College was eventually returned to Manhattan. The Lehman College is now on the campus where the UN met.

At the first meeting of the Security Council, which was held in a building known today as the Old Gym Building, an unknown New Yorker, a Greek immigrant carpenter, left a note with the following content: “May I, who had the honor to make this ballot box? cast your vote first? May God be with every member of the United Nations and, through your noble efforts, bring lasting peace to all of us - throughout the world. ”

This message from the past was discovered during a recent audit in the hall by full-time security officers.

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