Morris-Jumel Mansion

New York
NY

Morris-Jumel Mansion in upper Manhattan

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Manhattan's oldest existing house was built in 1756 as a summer retreat for loyalist British Lieutenant Colonel Roger Morris and his wife. Between 14-Sep and 20-Oct-1776 it served as headquarters to General Washington during the Battle of Harlem Heights. Later it served as the headquarters of Sir Henry Clinton and Hessian commander Baron Wilhelm von Knyphausen.

It was purchased by Steven Jumel in 1810; when he died his wife, Eliza, continued to live there until her death in 1865. Eliza became the second wife of Aaron Burr for three years in 1833.

Includes 12 restored period rooms.

For all their talk of reason and enlightenment, Washington and the other leading Founders were more religious than they sometimes seem. Most of them had no quarrel with religion as long as it was reasonable and orderly. Washington was a member of his Anglican, later Episcopal, church vestry, and he remained a frequent churchgoer — though unlike his wife, Martha, he never became a member of his church, meaning that he did not partake of the Eucharist on communion Sundays. Washington, the perfect Freemason, considered himself enlightened in religious matters (being no bigot myself to any mode of worship), and he almost never knelt in prayer and seems never to have purchased a bible.

Gordon S. Wood
Empire of Liberty: A History of the Early Republic, 1789–1815 (2009)