Morris-Jumel Mansion & The Hispanic Society in America  
Join Justin for a tour of the oldest house in Manhattan: Harlem’s Morris-Jumel Mansion. This splendid house was built in 1765, eleven years before the American Revolution, by British Colonel Roger Morris and his American wife, Mary Philipse. (Mary’s father, Frederick Philipse owned an immense tract of 52,000 acres along the Hudson River, from Spuyten Duyvil in the Bronx to Tarrytown in Westchester County.) Built in a majestic Palladian style, Colonel Roger and Mary Morris’s grand summer home was built on a breezy hilltop that proved to be an ideal location. Known as Mount Morris, this northern Manhattan estate stretched from the Harlem to the Hudson Rivers and covered more than 130 acres. Because they were loyal to the British crown, Colonel Morris and his wife were eventually forced to return to England.

The next tenant of the house was General George Washington, who planned the Battle of Harlem Heights in this home. After the American Revolution, President Washington returned to the Mansion on July 10, 1790, and dined with members of his cabinet. Guests at the table included two future Presidents of the United States: Vice President John Adams and Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson. Also in attendance were Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton and Secretary of War Henry Knox.

The first floor of the 8,500 square foot house features rooms for family and social gatherings, and includes the parlor in which the later owner of the house, Madame Eliza Jumel, married Aaron Burr in 1833. (Charles Dickens eternally memorialized a different “life moment” of Eliza Jumel in his novel, Great Expectations.) Across the hall stands the dining room where Washington likely entertained his guests in 1790. At the far end of the hall, the octagonal drawing room (or withdrawing room, as it is properly known) provided a grand setting for social gatherings. Bedrooms on the second floor include those of George Washington, Eliza Jumel, and Aaron Burr. The basement houses the colonial-era kitchen and tells the story of domestic servitude at the Mansion. The room features the original hearth and a beehive oven and early American cooking utensils.

We will also view nearby Sylvan Terrace, with its charming double-row of wooden 19th century workers’ houses. This intimate cobblestone street of humble homes is one of New York’s most beloved “secrets.”

Then, from the top of Harlem Heights, we’ll stroll about eight blocks to the Hispanic Society of America to view its world-renowned paintings by Diego Velázquez, Francisco de Goya, El Greco, and an impressive array of other noted Spanish painters. This is a rare collection of internationally beloved art treasures installed around a beautiful Spanish patio.

Delight in the romantic beauties of Spain in the immense room-sized panoramic mural series known as Visión de España – painted by Spain’s most famous Impressionist painter, Joaquín Sorolla y Bastida. This series of 14 vast canvases has recently returned from being on display at such museums as the Prado and the Guggenheim Bilbao and has been spectacularly reinstalled. The majestic painting series, with its brilliant colors and grand spectacles, is 230 feet wide and is nearly 12 feet high – representing the people, landscapes and customs of nine regions of Spain. The Hispanic Society is part of the impressive neoclassical complex Audubon Terrace, which boasts of impressive bronze and stone sculptures by the famous American sculptor Anna Hyatt Huntington.
REGISTRATION:
Please download, print and mail in your registration form along with payment.
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Date: Saturday May 26, 2012
Time: 1:00 PM  to approximately 4:30 PM
Cost: $25 In advance | $28 On Site - Check to Hermine Watterson
Meet: 162nd Street and Amsterdam Avenue outside the Rite Aid store.
(This is where Amsterdam and St. Nicholas Avenues form a “Y.”)
Train: C Train to 163rd Street and Amsterdam. Exit at 162nd Street.
Tours operate rain or shine. Please dress appropriately. For more information or to confirm meeting locations please call (212) 223-2777. Please note that tours sometimes run late. While tours are rarely cancelled you can call the number above to confirm, or join our mailing list to keep informed of cancellations due to extreme weather conditions.
Justin Ferate's Tours of the City | www.justinsnewyork.com
 
Justin Ferate's Tours of the City    |    (212) 223-2777    |    
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