The Art, Architecture, and Spirits of Lower Manhattan
Lower Manhattan is the oldest part of New York City; it is an excellent location to learn about groundbreaking public art and architecture. The southern tip of the island, the Battery, is the birthplace of modern America. As old as it is, it teems with the spirits of the past. Join us as we explore the city’s most historically exciting and mysterious area.
Public art is part of the fabric of New York City; on this tour, you will see the Cube and Sunken Fountain, Four Trees, Double Check, and the two Wall Street icons, The Fearless Girl and Charging Bull. Salted within these examples of public art are buildings in a diversity of styles, Greek and Gothic Revival, Beaux Arts, Art Deco, and International style skyscrapers, and the last great unregulated skyscraper, the Equitable Building. A structure that led to significant zoning law changes that resonate to this day.
Realize, as you walk, you are trodding the same streets that Alexander Hamilton, George Washington, Aaron Burr, and other founders walked as they plotted and schemed to defeat the British and lay the foundation for our country. There have been numerous spirit sightings along these old streets.
There is the ghost of Chloe, the protector of domestic animals. On Evacuation Day, when the British left Manhattan for good, Johnny Van Arsdale’s clambered up the greased flagpole to strike the Union Jack and hoist the Stars and Stripes. Johnny now serves as the vigilant spirit sentinel of Lower Manhattan. We’ll discuss the tortured soul of Alexander Hamilton, who felt responsible for his son Philips’s death by duel.
All these wraiths were and maybe still are human beings; they were naughty, friendly, angry, and sad. Their lives played out against the vast sweep of history. And they left the wisps of their spirit lives on the city’s familiar streets.
At the tour’s end, you will have learned amazing things about these fascinating people and the eventful eras they lived. You will also appreciate the seamless web of art and architecture that enriches our lives. And who knows, we might be lucky enough to have one of these phantoms quietly join us as we temporarily visit their eternal home.
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