תמונות בעמוד
PDF

and the houses well built. William-street is also elevated and convenient, and is the principal market for retailing of dry goods. Many of the other ftreets are pleasant, but most of them are irregular and narrow.

The houses are generally built of brick, and the roofs tiled. There are remaining a few houses built after the old Dutch manner, but the Eng. lifh tafte has prevailed almoft a century. • Upon the south-west point of the land stands the fort, which is a square with four bastions; within the walls of which the governors ufed formerly to refide. Below the fort, near the water, there is a line of fortifi: cations of considerable extent, designed to command the entrance into both rivers. But it is questionable, whether any number of cannon would prevent ships from paffing with a favourable wind and tide ; and indeed whe, ther New York is capable of defence by land against a powerful marine force. The battery, however, in the summer season furnishes the citizens with an agreeable walk, which is open to refreshing breezes from the bay.

The city-ball is a brick building, more strong than elegant. It is three ftories in height, with wings at each end, and fronts Broad-street, which affords an extensive profpeét. The first floor is an open walk, except two fmall apartments for the door-keeper and city-watch. In the fecond story of the eaftern wing is the assembly chamber, now occupied by Congress, and adorned with the following paintings : The portrait of the great Columbus, belonging to the assembly of this state ; a painting valuable only for its antiquity and the character of the nian-The likenesses of the King and Queen of France, as large as the life, execnted in a masterly manner, and presented to Congress by his Most Christian Majcity; equally valuable for the richness of the paintings, the dignity of the personages whom they represent, and as pledges of royal friendship-The likeness of General Washington, prefented by a gentleman in England; a likeness dear to every American, and destined to grace the walls of every councilchamber in the New World.

The western wing contains a room for the council or senate, now occu. pied by the secretary of Congress, and another for the Mayor's court. In che body of the house is a spacious hall for the fupreme judicial court, Large additions are now making to this building for the accommodation of Congress, under the direction of the ingenious Mon. Le Enfant.

There are three houses of public worship belonging to the reformed Proteftant Dutch Church, one is called the Old Dutch Church, which was built in the year 1693, and rebuilt in the year 1766; another is called the North Church, which was founded in the year 1767, and dedicated to the service of God in the year 1769. This last church being roined by the Britilh during the late war, was repaired in the year 1784, and has since been used with the old church for the performance of divine service. The middle church, generally called the New Dutch Church, was built in the year 1729; it is the most spacious of the three, but was also ruined in the war, and is not yet fully repaired.

The people of this denomination were the first fettlers of this state, and make a respectable part of the citizens. The church in the city is considered as one church or congregation, though worshipping in different places. The charter, or act of incorporation, was granted by Williain

the

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

the memory of the brave General Montgomery, who fell in the attaek of Quebec, December 31, 1775.

To the foregoing may be added the following churches :
German, Lutheran, and Calvinists, 2 | Moravians,
Roman Catholic,

i Methodists, Friends Meeting,

i Jews Synagogue, Baptists,

2 | French Protestant Church, (ont

of repair) 1 The gorernment of the city (which was incorporated in 16có) is now in the hands of a Mayor, Aldermen, and Common-Council. The city is divided into seven wards, in each of which there is chosen an. nually by the people an Alderman and an asliftant, who, together with the Mayor and Recorder, form the Common-Council. The Mayor and Recorder are appointed annually by the council of appointment.

The Mayor's court, which is held from time to time by adjournment, is in high reputation as a court of law.

A court of sessions is likewise held for the trial of criminal causes.

The situation of the city is both healthy and pleasant. Surrounded on all sides by water, it is refreshed with cool breezes in summer, and the air in winter is more temperate than in other places under the same parallel. York island is fifteen miles in length, and hardly one in breadth. It is joined to the main by a bridge called King's bridge. The channels between Long and Staten islands, and between Long and York islands are so narrow as to occasion an unusual rapidity of the tides, which is increased by the confluence of the waters of ihe Hudson and East River. This rapidity in general prevents the obftruction of the channel by ice-so that the navigation is clear, except for a few days in seasons when the weather is uncommonly severe. There is no balon or bay for the reception of Tips, but the road where they lie in Eaft River is defended from the vio. lence of the sea by the islands which interlock with each other; so that except that of Rhode Island, the larbour of New York, which admits ships of any burthen, is the beit in the United States.

This city is esteemed the most eligible situation for commerce in the United States. It almost necessarily commands the trade of one-half NewJersey, most of that of Connecticut, and part of that of Massachusetts; besides the whole fertile interior country, which is penetrated by one of the largest rivers in America. This city imports most of the goods consumed between a line of thirty miles eait of Connecticut river, and twenty miles west of the Hudson, which is 130 miles, and between the ocean and the confines of Canada, about 250 miles ; a confiderable portion of which is the best peopled of any part of the United States, and the whole territory contains at least half a million of people, or one-sixth of the inhabitants of the union. Besides, some of the other states are partially supplied with goods from New-York. But in the staple commodity flour, Pennsylvania and Maryland have rivalled it—the superfine flour of those ftates commanding a higher price than that of New-York.

In the manufacture likewise of iron, paper, cabinet works, &c. Pennsylvania exceeds not only New-York, but all her sitter states. In times of peace, however, New-York will command more commercial bufi. ness than any town in the United States. In time of war it will be

insecure,

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

Mr.

* This account of the city of New York, is taken principally from Webster's valuable Magazine for March 1788.

+ Albany was incorporated by Colonel Dengan, in 1686. Smith.

« הקודםהמשך »