Saturday, January 20, 2007

The Tower of London Again?

The location is thought to be (and by the way Mr. James Truex an administrator at the Friends World College, a Quaker institute of higher learning on Long Island, NY which I visited once, was a past president of the Suffolk County Archaeological Association for a number of years) wherever near the corner of Beekman and Pearl streets the property, parking lot is bounded by them and Pearl and Water Street, the original shoreline somewhere near Pearl street side. On one corner lived American patriot Walter Bowne who became in his older age, the Quaker Mayor of New York City. They were important in the shipping and business of the South Street Seaport, the first regular packet service to Liverpool, England started by them from there in about 1819.

As survey techniques improved land descriptions changed orientation and are laid out slightly different in succeeding official surveys. There are whole "gores" in New England between properties and the ones in New Jersey belong to an association of "Freeholders" from the original settlers with power like the former Governor and EPA chief Christine Todd Whitman. In New York State they auction them off a surveyor told me trying to interest the adjoining holders in adding to their property.

The documentation on this lot of land building is fairly descriptive though depths are sort of reconstructed from nearby city borings, construction and sometimes destruction permits. However, urban landscapes tend to accumulate, with the age of steam I would assert and the steam shovel giving rise to wholesale movements of large amounts off site. Mr. Peck after which Peck Slip is named is one of the first city benefactors to propose more land to be made and a Peck Slip Market was once where the "slip" (where the Dutch would bring the boats into the town) was filled and properties made, in response to economic factors. One French observer wrote that it seemed the Americans had solved their American Revolution unemployed soldier problem as upwards of 5000 were employed in filling in and leveling the former battlements, slips perhaps and sometime standing water. The island was remarkably marshy in some places like the east side of Canal Street west of Houston ("howston" they say here).

Basically, I'm not sure where it was, post 1750 or so there was a lot of filling.

> The island was remarkably marshy in some places like the east side of > Canal Street west of Houston ("howston" they say here).

Houston Street east of Bowery and also west of Bowery was reported marsh, where the street numbers start 2nd Ave., 2nd Street, 3rd St., 4th Street also probably on made land, another area I've had to study for archaeological potential. The whole area east of Bowery above Houston was of marsh with some island in the middle of it, part of the archipelago technically therefore I think.

No comments:

Post a Comment