Sons of the Revolution

The 141st George Washington Birthday Ball

Since 1877, the Sons of the Revolution in the State of New York have been hosting the George Washington Birthday Ball in honor of George Washington. This celebration is a fundraiser for Fraunces Tavern Museum, one of our country’s oldest and most important historical sites.  Fraunces Tavern was a meeting place for the Sons of Liberty. It was in the Tavern’s
Long Room where George Washington bid farewell to his officers after the British evacuated New York City. In 1785 the Tavern was leased by the government to house the Department of Foreign Affairs and in 1787 the Departments of Treasury and War moved in.


This year marks the 141st Ball as well as the 111th anniversary of the opening of Fraunces Tavern Museum.


We invite you to join the Benefit Committee and be an important part of this year’s Ball.  The Committee is composed of Society members, Museum members, individuals, organizations, foundations, and companies that support the mission of the Museum, which is to educate the public about the struggles, importance, and heroes of the American Revolution.

Your commitment to the Museum through the Benefit Committee will help to sustain the
only museum in New York City dedicated to the history of the American Revolution.  The
Museum receives about 30,000 visitors each year (a 300% increase over the past ten years), of whom 5,000 are schoolchildren participating in our interactive educational programming. The Museum presents annually rotating exhibits within our nine galleries, monthly lectures by notable authors and experts, and hosts local historical walking tours.

You can join the Benefit Committee by printing out and returning the Benefit Committee Form to Sons of the Revolution c/o Benefit Committee, 54 Pearl Street, New York, NY 10004. You can also join the Committee through our website by clicking HERE. As a Benefit Committee Member you are entitled to be listed on the invitation and in the Ball Journal.


This year’s George Washington Birthday Ball will be held at the Metropolitan Club located at 1 East 60th Street, New York, on Friday, February 16, 2018 at 7:00 pm. For those who cannot attend, we hope you will consider a contribution to help us continue our important educational mission.



    Ambrose M. Richardson, III

Continue reading

From Daytonian In Manhattan:
Saturday, July 23, 2016

The Altered 1746 Ye Olde Coffee House — No. 105 Broad Street

In 1746 a three-story brick building was erected at No. 105 Broad Street, on a plot owned by Philip Van Cortlandt. An inn and meeting place called Ye Olde Coffee House, it replaced the Exchange Coffee House, or New Coffee House, that had stood on the northeast corner of Water Street since at least 1709.

On the opposite end of the narrow block, at the corner of Pearl Street, was the elegant home of James DeLancy which would be purchased by Samuel Fraunces in 1762 and converted to the Queens Head Tavern. It was renamed Frances Tavern during the Revolution.

Both structures would be important in the conflict with the British. According to the New-York Tribune a century and a half later, “The Sons of Liberty, who later became bolder and changed their name to the Liberty Boys, organized and held meetings at ‘Ye Olde Coffee House’ in 1765.”

A large iron bell hung outside a neighboring building, according to the New York Herald on September 2, 1920, “in the early days of New Amsterdam, when the clangor of its iron tongue rang out joyful news on special occasions or announced the safe arrival of merchant vessels from the Fatherland. Later, when Ye Olde Coffee House had become the meeting place of the Sons of Liberty, so tradition hath it, this time-pocked old relic summoned them to assembly, and in 1776 it rang for them the call to arms against the mother country.”

Following the Revolution, the building became home to businesses related to the shipping industry. By 1856 L. B. Crocker & Co., had its office here. The firm, consisting of L. B. Crocker and George Jennison, operated a line of Erie Canal barges. The extent of its business was reflected in the $2,000 note the Lake Erie, Wabash and St. Louis Railway Company sent to it in July that year. The payment would amount to nearly $58,000 in 2016 dollars.

Ship chandler George W. Hadden had problems with theft that same month. On Saturday, July 12 he appeared before Justice Davidson, charging that “William Thomson and John Johnson had stolen from him 350 lbs. of boat lines, hawsers and two hatch cloths, worth $40,” as reported by The New York Times. “The accused were committed for trial.”

Also in the building was the lighterage firm of John S. Conklin. His job, the moving of cargo from large ships to smaller vessels so they could be off-loaded in port, became dangerous in 1858 when New York City was terrorized by an outbreak of yellow fever. The panic was so great that rumors spread that Castle Garden, the “Emigrant Depot,” would be burned.

The 43-year old Conklin joined with eight other “lightermen” and presented a list of increased charges for “lightering infected cargoes from Quarantine.” Among the group were well-known businessmen like John McCreery and Cornelius Vanderbilt.

Following the Civil War M.…

Continue reading

Copyright © 2011-2017 Bygone NYC - All Rights Reserved