Hamilton Grange National Memorial | PARK AT A GLANCE

The Grange, the summer home of Alexander Hamilton

The Grange, the summer home of Alexander Hamilton

PARK OVERVIEW

Hamilton Grange National Memorial preserves The Grange, the summer home of Alexander Hamilton. The house is located in Harlem on 141st Street between Convent and St. Nicholas avenues. Harlem was a popular rural area in Hamilton’s day where many wealthy families from lower Manhattan came to spend the summer. After spending the summer of 1799 in a rental house, Hamilton decided to purchase 32 acres on which he could build his own house. It was located near the corner of today’s 143rd Street and Convent Avenue, but has been moved twice since its completion in 1802.

Alexander Hamilton was killed in a duel with the vice-president of the United States, Aaron Burr, in 1804, so he did not spend many summers at The Grange. The house remained in the family for about thirty years before being sold. During this time, development of Manhattan Island steadily progressed northward, and by 1889, it had reached Harlem. The Grange sat in the way of the proposed 143rd Street, and being in foreclosure at the time, it could have easily been demolished had it not been donated to St. Luke’s Episcopal Church for use as a temporary meeting place while funds for a permanent church were raised. St. Luke’s had the house moved to near the corner of 141st and Convent Avenue, though the original side porches were removed. There was no value put upon the fact that Alexander Hamilton once owned it, for historical preservation was not important at the time. After the new church was completed around 1900, The Grange became the pastor’s house, and then later a school.

Three locations of The Grange

Three locations of The Grange

The Grange was donated to the National Park Service in 1962 with the proviso that it be moved to a new location and restored. By this time the house was stuck between St. Luke’s Church on one side and apartment buildings on the other. It took nearly fifty years, but in 2008 the house was finally moved to a new location at the very northern end of St. Nicholas Park, which is within the bounds of the original 32-acre Hamilton estate.

The problem with moving the house was that part of a covered walkway of St. Luke’s had been built in front of it, so the house had to be raised in place 30 feet, moved over the walkway and out to the street, lowered, and then moved around the corner to St. Nicholas Park. Once in its new location, The Grange was restored back to its original condition based on old photos, written descriptions, and forensic archaeology. This included reconstructions of the original side porches.

Reconstructed porch of The Grange

Reconstructed porch of The Grange

Visitors to Hamilton Grange National Memorial can read about Alexander Hamilton in the first floor exhibit room, then take either a Ranger-guided or self-guided tour of the second floor. Three furnished rooms are open to the public, and some of the furnishing actually belonged to the Hamilton family. A book and souvenir store is also located on the first floor.


OPERATING HOURS

Hamilton Grange National Memorial is open year-round on Wednesdays through Sundays between the hours of 9 AM and 5 PM, except when closed on Thanksgiving and Christmas days.

Ranger-guided tours of the second floor rooms are at 10 AM, 11 AM, and 2 PM. You can tour the rooms on your own from 12 PM to 1 PM and 3 PM to 4 PM. Keep in mind that times can always change, so before making travel plans be sure to get the latest schedule on the National Park Service’s official Operating Hours and Seasons web page for Hamilton Grange National Memorial.


FEES

There are no fees associated with a visit to Hamilton Grange National Memorial.


SCHEDULING YOUR TIME

Visitor Center
allow 30 minutes to 1 hour

House Tour
allow 30 minutes

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Last updated on May 31, 2020
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