Before Chinatown was Chinatown: The Federal Era and Five Points Tour

Photos by Mark Satlof

Join Untapped New York Insider Mark Satlof for a walk through Manhattan’s Chinatown in search of the remnants of Federal era and pre-Civil War New York.

  • Stand at the literal Five Points, and learn about the notorious neighborhood’s surprising relationship to modern Chinatown.
  • See a dozen-plus early to mid 19th century buildings, homes and houses of worship (dipping into the adjoining Two Bridges area) hidden among the later streetscape.
  • Hear about the Dutch roots and Colonial beginnings of the old “Sixth Ward” (now approximately Chinatown) and walk on streets first laid out in the 1750s and earlier.
  • Discover how, underneath the altered facades of numerous Chinatown buildings, lie the hidden bones of 18th and early 19th century structures – and New York’s oldest tenement.

About the event:

The Chinatown (and the adjacent Two Bridges) neighborhoods are among the oldest built areas in New York city. Besides their long and unbroken 150 year history as a residential area and haven that is popular with immigrants from China, Chinatown in particular has been a destination for New York City native voyeurs and tourists for over a hundred years. But on this tour, Insiders will learn what few visitors ever know: the rich history and scattered remnants of the district’s pre-Chinatown Revolutionary and Federal Era roots and its relationship to the notorious Five Points neighborhood. Please support Chinatown by sticking around post-tour to enjoy its amazing food, with tips from your guide.

Untapped New York Insider and long time Chinatown habitue Mark Satlof will set the scene for this trip back in time, guide you through the area in search of old New York and leave you with the address of the best dumplings in New York!

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