5. The Former Franklin (or Osgood) House on Cherry Street Was the First Presidential Mansion

Photo via Wikimedia: The New York Public Library

The first presidential mansion, known first as the Franklin House was located on Cherry Street and built in 1770 by wealthy merchant Walter Franklin. Upon his death, his widow Maria Bowne Franklin became the second wife to Samuel Osgood (a merchant and statesman and postmaster general during George Washington’s first term).

The family vacated the mansion to allow it to serve as the first presidential mansion for the Washingtons. The three-story brick home was decorated by Mrs. Osgood and Lady Kitty Duer. Though the Washingtons felt it was favorable (also shipping their own personal items from Mount Vernon), the French Minister did not. The building was demolished in the 1850s and was located near the site of today’s Brooklyn Bridge.