Calendar of Events
Tuesday, September 30, 6:30 p.m.
19th Century Lifeways Lecture: The Tredwells’ ca. 1848 Piano, Restored!
Musical instrument conservator Stewart Pollens will describe the design, construction, and special features of the Nunns and Fischer square piano, an instrument made in New York shortly before 1850 and purchased by the Tredwells for the front parlor. He will also discuss the work involved in restoring it to playability.
$10, Free for Members. Reservations required; click here to purchase tickets. Members please email firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve.
Mr. Pollens served as the chief conservator of musical instruments at the Metropolitan Museum of Art between 1976 and 2006. He is the author of numerous books and articles, including The Early Pianoforte, published by Cambridge University Press in 1995 (reprinted 2009), and is currently writing The Manual of Musical Instrument Conservation and Bartolomeo Cristofori: Inventor of the Piano, both of which will be published by Cambridge University Press.
‘Spirited’ October Events, including Candlelight Ghost Tours, 1865 Funeral Reenactment, Chant Macabre, Tales form the Crypt on Halloween, Ghost Hunting 101, and more.
Thursday, November 20, 6:30 p.m.
The First Foodies: The Evolution of Dining in 19th Century New York City
The first half of the 19th century saw seismic changes in the food and dining patterns of New Yorkers like the Tredwells. During this period, restaurants emerged on the scene (initially called “victualling houses”); private grocery stores replaced public markets as the main source for New Yorkers’ daily food needs; and a host of new technologies including gas lines, the ice box, and the cookstove changed food preparation within the middle- and upper-class home. And, yes, people lined up for the 19th century version of a cronut. Join Cindy Lobel, author of Urban Appetites: Food and Culture in Nineteenth-Century New York, as she explores how these changes affected the Tredwells and their circle as well as their servants. The illustrated lecture will be followed by a reception and book signing. $15. Reservations required; click here to purchase tickets.
Guided House Tours
Every Monday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday & Sunday, 2 p.m.
(Museum is closed Tuesday & Wednesday)
Guided Tour of the Merchant’s House Museum
Explore Manhattan’s “best-preserved” (The New York Times) 19th-century home and learn about the domestic life of a prosperous merchant family and their four Irish servants from 1835 to 1865, as New York City transformed from seaport to thriving metropolis. You’ll visit four floors of this Federal and Greek Revival style row house virtually complete with the family’s original furnishings and decorative arts.
The tour concludes in the newly restored 4th-floor Servants’ Quarters, “arguably the oldest intact site of Irish habitation in Manhattan,” according to Time Out New York. You are invited to come climb the narrow staircase and see where the wealthy Tredwell family’s staff of four domestic servants lived and did some of their work.
Included with regular admission. (Always FREE for Members)
Reservations not required for groups of fewer than 10 people. If your group has more than 10 people, please contact us about scheduling a group program.
Sunday Walking Tours of the Neighborhood
March through November, second Sunday of the month, 12:30 p.m. Tours are one hour and begin promptly at 12:30 p.m. Promenaders will return to the Museum in time to take the 2 p.m. Guided Tour if they wish.
$10. Students & Seniors $5. FREE for Members. No reservations.
Sunday, September 14, and November 9, 12:30 p.m.
Walking Tour: 19th Century Landmark Treasures of Noho
On this one-hour walking tour of the Noho Historic District, promenaders will see 11 buildings designated as individual New York City landmarks. The tour begins at the 1832 Merchant’s House and within a few blocks traces 100 years of social, economic and technological changes in New York during the 19th century, from a residential enclave for the wealthy merchant families of Old New York to a center of manufacturing and busy cultural center. The tour will feature stories of famous as well as infamous residents and builders of these landmarks and the renowned architects who designed them. Stops will include Colonnade Row, the DeVinne Press Building, Astor Library, The Cooper Union, and the Bayard-Condict Building.
The Merchant’s House Museum is a member of the NYC Landmarks50 Alliance, which over the next two years will engage and educate the public about the importance of the NYC Landmarks Preservation Law (April 19, 1965) and celebrate its 50th anniversary.
Sunday, October 12, 12:30 p.m.
‘Spirited’ Walking Tour of 19th Century Noho: Glamour, Greed — & Ghosts
The neighborhood surrounding the Merchant’s House was home to some of the most famous, and infamous, names in New York history. From the literary to the illegal, New York society was played out in the elegant parlors and dark alleys of the fashionable Bond Street neighborhood. On this tour, we’ll see the haunts of renowned figures such as Edgar Allen Poe and Washington Irving; the spirits of long ago firemen and stable boys; the high and low life characters of the Bowery — as well as a tale or two of haunted happenings at the Merchant’s House. And we’ll visit the site of the most grisly of all 19th-century New York murders and hear tales of more contemporary ghosts that just won’t leave the neighborhood.
NOTE: Tours are canceled in the case of heavy rain, snow, or extreme heat and cold advisories.