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10 spots that highlight New York's role in the Revolutionary War
New York City had a paramount and storied role in the Revolutionary War and the country’s founding, with important battles being fought here and many of the Founding Fathers carrying out their most important business at city locales. Here are 10 spots that played crucial parts in the war:
This still-operational tavern, built in 1719, was among the most important prewar meeting places for the Sons of Liberty. Originally built as a mansion, the tavern was the location of the pivotal tea crisis in 1765. After the war was won, Gen. George Washington delivered his farewell in 1783 in a victory feast at the tavern after the final British troops left New York. 54 Pearl St., Manhattan
This fort, located at the highest natural point in Manhattan, was the scene of one of the worst American defeats in the war, when 8,000 British troops overwhelmed more than 2,800 American soldiers. Fifty-three Americans were killed, nearly 100 wounded and the rest captured. Fort Washington Park, Riverside Dr. and Hudson River, W. 155th St. to W. 179th St., Manhattan
This star-shaped fort was erected in 1776 and was the largest American fort on Long Island. Gen. Washington abandoned it, however, after the British won the Battle of Long Island.
City Hall Park
This park was one of the most significant sites of the American Revolution. Gen. Washington first read the Declaration of Independence to troops here. A statue of Nathan Hale stands in the park. The revolution’s most famous martyr, Hale was said to have been executed here. Broadway btwn Park Row and Chambers St., Manhattan
This site’s impact on the early republic can’t be overstated: The first American Congress was held here; the Bill of Rights was adopted in the hall; the federal government was established here; and President George Washington was inaugurated on the original building’s steps in 1789. A national memorial now stands on the site. 26 Wall St., Manhattan
Built in 1765, this is the oldest house in Manhattan, and it served as Gen. Washington’s headquarters during the Battle of Harlem Heights in 1776. Washington abandoned it after the battle, and it became the headquarters of high-ranking British forces, but Washington returned to the house in 1790 to meet with members of his cabinet. 65 Jumel Terrace, Manhattan
The site of Alexander Hamilton’s grave as well as those of many other, unknown martyrs, the church’s clergy remained loyal to the British during the war. 74 Trinity Place, Manhattan
St. Paul’s Chapel
The only surviving city church from the war, George Washington himself worshipped at St. Paul’s, coming here after his 1789 presidential inauguration. Many luminaries from the Revolutionary War are buried here, including Gen. Richard Montgomery. 209 Broadway, Manhattan
When the last of the British troops left New York, a Union flag was raised in Battery Park, and for years afterward the site hosted annual celebrations of independence. Battery Place btwn State St. and Whitehall St., Manhattan
The first major battle of the war after the Declaration of Independence was signed, the Battle of Brooklyn, was fought on the land that eventually became this venerated cemetery.