New York is more caught up with the brash new than with the distant past, but you can get a sense of the early days of the city in such cherished landmarks as the Morris-Jumel Mansion, Revolutionary War headquarters of George Washington and later home to Eliza Jumel and Aaron Burr – the vice-president who killed Secretary of Treasury Alexander Hamilton, who lived down the road in Hamilton Grange.
The 19th-century Merchant’s House shows off the domestic tastes of prosperous New Yorkers of a century and half ago, while uptown the Neue Galerie and Frick Collection show off fine art as well as the lavish homes of a long vanished era.
Thousands of enslaved men, women, and children who helped build New York from the time of the city’s 17th-century Dutch days to the abolition of slavery in the US in 1865 are buried at what is now the African Burial Ground National Memorial. Many literary giants called Greenwich Village home, and you can walk the streets once trod by T.S. Eliot, Ezra Pound, Edward Albee and Henry James.