Through public education programs and exhibitions, restoration of its 1832 landmark building, and conservation of its original collections, the Museum tells the story of the domestic life of a wealthy merchant family and their four Irish servants, 1835-1865, when the mercantile seaport of New York City emerged as a growing metropolis and the commercial emporium of America.
Manhattan’s First Landmark
Considered one of the finest surviving examples of domestic architecture from the period, the 1832 late-Federal and Greek Revival Merchant’s House is a designated landmark on the federal, state, and city level.
In New York City, it was the first building designated in the borough of Manhattan following the passing of the Landmarks Preservation law in April 1965. It is one of only 120 interior landmarks in the City, and one of only 6 residences. In 1966, the Merchant’s House was recognized as a National Historic Landmark (one of only 2,400) and listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1977.
It is the only historic house museum in the Greenwich Village/Soho/NoHo neighborhoods and celebrated 75 years as a museum in 2011.
The Tredwell Collection
The Museum’s collection of over 3,000 items comprises the possessions of the Tredwells, the wealthy merchant-class family who lived in the House from 1835 to 1933. The collection includes furniture, decorative arts, clothing, photographs and books, household items, and personal items. Highlights include a suite of 12 mahogany side chairs attributed to renowned furniture maker Duncan Phyfe, a pair of matching six-globe gas chandeliers, and 40 dresses and numerous fashion accessories that belonged to the Tredwell women.
The Merchant’s House is owned by the City of New York, operated by The Old Merchants House of New York, Inc., and is a member of the Historic House Trust.