NYC Tidbits: Federal Hall

New Yorkers, it's time to get off your butts and visit Federal Hall. I've walked past it a million times, only knowing (because of the large statue outside) it was the location of George Washington's swearing-in as the first POTUS. Mandy and I checked it out yesterday, and it's not only absolutely beautiful, it's an incredibly important historic location.

Also on this site: Newspaper publisher John Peter Zenger was imprisoned, tried, and acquitted of seditious libel, establishing freedom of the press. The Stamp Act Congress met, taking the first official steps towards the rebellion against British rule ("taxation without representation"). It was the first Capitol of the US after the Constitution was ratified in 1789, and our first-ever Congress met here. During that first Congressional session, the Bill of Rights was discussed, composed, and passed.

The site's current building--based on both the Parthenon and Pantheon--opened as the US Customs house in 1842, became a sub-treasury in 1846, and became a national monument in 1939.

Federal Hall, 26 Wall Street, is open Monday-Friday, 9AM to 5PM. Admission is free. Check the website for holiday closings.

No comments: