Category:Government House, New York

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The Government House in New York City was built in 1790 at the foot of Broadway, south of Bowling Green. The building site was previously occupied by Fort George, and is now occupied by the Alexander Hamilton Custom House. It was intended to be the executive mansion for George Washington. From 1799 to 1815, it was used as a Custom House. (Source: AIA Guide to NYC (5th ed.))

“…One of the baits that New York offered to be made the "Federal City" was the building, in 1790, of "Government House," opposite the Bowling Green, and on the very site of the demolished fort. There it stood for twenty-five years. The Federal government had in the meantime migrated to Philadelphia and thence to Washington, and of course the house was never occupied for the purpose of a "White House," for which it was intended. Note, also, that the British title reverted not to the government of the United States, which did not really yet exist in a condition to "take title," but to the Province, now become the State of New York. This change of status is recognized in the name of "State" Street. Government House was appropriated to the official uses of the Governor of New York, and was successively inhabited by Governors Clinton and Jay. John McComb, the putative architect of the City Hall and of St. John's Chapel, is also the putative architect of this building. But it may be questioned whether the ascription be not a confusion. The John McComb to whom the other buildings were ascribed, was only 27 when "Government House" was built. He continued to be "junior" until about 1810. Most likely it was his father who was the builder of "Government House," and hired a draughtsman of the plans. Not that it matters much who drew them. It was demolished in 1815, and its place taken by [a] row of seven houses…” -- Montgomery Schuyler. “A Relic of Old New York,” in Architectural Record, Vol. 25 No. 3 (March 1909), pp. 217-8, online at Google Books.

The U.S. Customs Service, established by the First Congress in 1789, is the oldest federal agency. The Customs Service assesses and collects duties and taxes on imported goods, controls carriers of imports and exports, and combats smuggling and revenue fraud.… Bowling Green, [Manhattan] island's first parade ground and park, was the site of the city's first Custom House which burned down in 1814. -- “Alexander Hamilton U.S. Custom House, New York, NY,” Website of the United States General Services Administration.