Since “Hamilton,” the hit musical following the peaks and valleys of Alexander Hamilton’s life, graced broadway beginning in August 2015, Alexander Hamilton, born in 1755, found a revival in pop culture. Few, however, know the secrets of the house some believe to be the only home Hamilton owned: Hamilton Grange.
Since Alexander Hamilton and his wife often spent time apart from each other, they sent letters to each other in the effort of staying in touch. According to the Museum of the City of New York, Hamilton wrote the Elizabeth about his “sweet project” that he would tell her about when he saw her next. He claimed that she could “guess and guess again,” but that she would never believe what he was planning. Once they were reunited, he informed her about the “sweet project.”
This country home, built in 1802 in Hamilton Heights by John McComb Junior, is now considered a National Memorial. As Hamilton promises to his wife Elizabeth Schuyler Hamilton in the song “Helpless,” “We’ll get a little place in Harlem and we’ll figure it out,” the home can still be visited in Upper Manhattan. Theater and history fanatics alike can visit this little place for free (and through us at Untapped New York Insiders).
1. Hamilton Grange has moved twice
Originally built on 32 acres of land in upper Manhattan, Hamilton Grange has since moved in response to the growth of New York City (something not too uncommon here!). Initially located at what is currently 143rd Street until 1889, Hamilton Grange was moved a half block east and two blocks south. It was here that the house survived until 2008 when National Memorial officials moved the home to St. Nicholas Park, a location within the 32 acres of land on which Hamilton Grange was originally located.
During the first relocation, the original porches and staircase were removed along with the boarding up of the front entrance. However, the house was restored to its original condition when it moved to its current location. During this second relocation, it was lifted ten feet in the air and moved down the street. Although the home is oriented so it can have a better view from the street, it appears nearly as it did when it was built in 1802.