The Merchant House Museum.
The house at 29 East Fourth Street was built in 1832 for Seabury Tredwell, a wealthy merchant. The Tredwell family continued to live in the house until 1933, then in 1936 it opened as a museum. As it went directly from the family home to being a museum, there are many original furnishings and family belongings in the house. This is a wonderful opportunity to wander at your own pace through the formal rooms, the bedrooms upstairs, and the kitchen downstairs to see how people lived in this fashionable neighborhood of 19th Century New York.
A Neighborhood Walking Tour.
The Merchant’s House museum provides visitors directions which describe “A Walk Through 19th Century NoHo” covering eleven New York City Landmarks within a few blocks walk. Following the map provided will guide you to residential and commercial historic sites.
While visiting the Merchant’s House, pick up their brochure and enjoy this neighborhood walk through history. The house next door at number 37 which is being renovated, was built in 1845 for Samuel Skidmore, also a merchant and d a cousin of the family.
Nearby Cooper Union is a well known college for the practical arts, such as architecture. It was built in 1859 by Peter Cooper, and is an Italianate-style brownstone building which is the oldest standing iron frame building in America. Students with talent still attend this historic institution tuition free.
A Bank, Library, Fire Department and the First Skyscraper.
The other buildings on the walk are commercial. There is a bank, and the Astor Library building, which has been converted to a theater. Fire Engine Company No. 33 built in 1899 is still in use. Several office buildings still stand, including the Bayard-Condict Building on Bleeker Street built by Louis Sullivan from Chicago in 1899, which is a twelve story steel frame building. Look up. This was New York City’s first skyscraper.
Tourists and New Yorkers alike walk past so many fine building which have historical importance. This walk around an old neighborhood could be the start of further treks into the history of the great city of New York.
Source: Personal experience as a guest of the Merchant House Museum.