NYC’s Oldest Buildings: What Are They and Where Are They? Test Your Knowledge

Posted On Tue, June 10, 2014 By

Posted On Tue, June 10, 2014 By In Architecture, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens

New York has a lot of old buildings. Perhaps surprisingly, many of those buildings are actually houses (yes, like real houses). These remnants of the early Dutch farming days can be spotted throughout the five boroughs, as can churches, apartments and “skyscrapers” from earlier times. We’ve rounded up some of the city’s oldest structures. Test your knowledge and see how many you’re familiar with ahead. And while you’re at it, make plans to visit one of these historic landmarks the next time you’re out and about.

Oldest Church (1694)

Old Quaker Meeting House

Everyone knows Trinity Church and St. Patrick’s Cathedral, but you’ve probably never heard of this one: the Old Quaker Meeting House in Flushing. It was built in 1694 and is considered the oldest house of worship in the state. It’s had visitors like George Washington, and is still a meeting place for Quakers!

Location: 13716 Northern Blvd, Flushing, NY 11354

Oldest Government Building (1812)

New York City Hall

Not only is this the largest government building in the city, it happens to be the oldest city hall in the U.S. that still houses, well, the government. The Governor’s Room, which features incredible historical furniture and portraits, has hosted such esteemed guests as Abraham Lincoln and Albert Einstein.

Location: City Hall, 260 Broadway New York, NY 10007

Oldest Skyscraper (1901)

The Flatiron Building

So, technically the first skyscraper built in the city was The Tower Building in 1889. It was 11 stories high, and was considered the city’s first skyscraper because it was the first building to have a steel skeleton. It was demolished in 1913. However, the next iconic skyscraper was built in 1901 and is still standing there today. Recognize it? At the time, the then-daring shape of the Flatiron building (originally the Fuller building) actually upset a lot of people in the city. They called it “awkward” and “a monstrosity,” but the public opinion is much different today.

Location: 175 5th Ave, New York, NY 10010

Oldest Apartment Building (1879)

129-west-17th-street-new

The first apartment building in the city, the Stuyvesant Apartments on E. 18th Street, no longer stands, but at the time it was an innovative new creation brought from France overseas. Before 1870 there were no “acceptable” communal living situations for middle class residents (i.e., not tenements). The introduction of apartment buildings solved a huge problem for businessmen and couples who didn’t need all the space of a house. At 129 E. 17th Street, the oldest continuously lived in apartment building is getting a makeover into duplex apartments, though the renovators are taking care to preserve the interior.

Location: 129 E 17th St New York, NY 10003

Oldest School (1867)

PS 34 in Greenpoint

The oldest school building is P.S. 34 in Greenpoint. It was used as a hospital during the Civil War.

Location: 131 Norman Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11222

Oldest Building (1652)

Pieter Claesen Wyckoff House

Finally, the oldest, still-standing building in New York City is the Wyckoff House in Canarsie. Built by Pieter Claeson Wyckoff in 1652, there have been additions on the house, but the original structure is pure 1600s. It used to be a farmhouse, but the city slowly filled in around it, and it’s now a museum.

Location: 5816 Clarendon Rd, Brooklyn, NY 11203

Lead Image: © Jeffrey Zeldman

Tags : , ,

Neighborhoods : Flatiron,Gramercy Park,Greenpoint

MOST RECENT ARTICLES

  • Plans for SHoP’s 10-story wooden condo tower squashed

    Plans for SHoP’s 10-story wooden condo tower squashed

    SHoP’s proposed wooden tower has gotten the axe, reports The Real Deal. The wood high-rise which was slated to rise along 18th ...
  • RAH:DESIGN employed modern home-building techniques to design this cool dog house

    RAH:DESIGN employed modern home-building techniques to design this cool dog house

    While there are many doggie-abodes on the market, the designers at RAH:DESIGN found themselves struggling to find something that fit with ...
  • J.P. Morgan’s 120-year-old ‘Great Camp Uncas’ in the Adirondack wilderness reduced to $2.7M

    J.P. Morgan’s 120-year-old ‘Great Camp Uncas’ in the Adirondack wilderness reduced to $2.7M

    A standout even among the region’s Great Camps, the secluded Camp Uncas was built in 1895 by Brooklynite William West ...
  • FREE RENT: A roundup of NYC’s latest rental concessions

    FREE RENT: A roundup of NYC’s latest rental concessions

    FiDi’s 180 Water Street Announces March Opening; Now Leasing No Fee Rentals + One Month Free [link] Renovated Apartments at ...
  • A slew of new residential developments are headed for the Rockaways

    A slew of new residential developments are headed for the Rockaways

    February is too frigid to fantasize about the Rockaways’ wide white-sand beaches, but the playground peninsula is hot for a different ...
  • Every NY Times front page since 1852 in under a minute; Brooklyn’s evil eye mecca

    Every NY Times front page since 1852 in under a minute; Brooklyn’s evil eye mecca

    Disney Research created a new technology that can wirelessly power an entire room and charge devices. [Travel + Leisure] Ellen DeGeneres ...
  • Glamorous modern condo inside a historic Bed-Stuy townhouse asks $855K

    Glamorous modern condo inside a historic Bed-Stuy townhouse asks $855K

    Talk about an apartment with good bones. This modern condo was carved from the historic four-story townhouse at 347 Gates ...
  • The Urban Lens: Will Ellis explores the relics and ruins of Staten Island’s remote edges

    The Urban Lens: Will Ellis explores the relics and ruins of Staten Island’s remote edges

    6sqft’s ongoing series The Urban Lens invites photographers to share work exploring a theme or a place within New York City. ...
  • Ivanka Trump’s Park Avenue starter pad, still without a buyer, gets a rental price chop to $13K a month

    Ivanka Trump’s Park Avenue starter pad, still without a buyer, gets a rental price chop to $13K a month

    As 6sqft previously reported, Ms. Trump and husband Jared Kushner, now senior adviser to President Donald Trump, first listed their apartment ...
  • South Harlem community board wants brokers to stop calling it ‘SoHa’

    South Harlem community board wants brokers to stop calling it ‘SoHa’

    Harlem’s gentrification and increasing real estate prices aren’t news at this point, but a local community board thinks certain real ...
  • $10M Upper East Side townhouse is introducing its neighbors to the future

    $10M Upper East Side townhouse is introducing its neighbors to the future

    Sleek casement windows and a minimalist grey facade are the first sign that this otherwise unassuming mid-block home at 419 East ...
  • 120 more affordable units available at the Bronx’s Compass Residences complex, from $822/month

    120 more affordable units available at the Bronx’s Compass Residences complex, from $822/month

    Back in 2011, Dattner Architects created the West Farms Redevelopment Plan, a rezoning (the largest ever in the Bronx at the ...

SIGN UP FOR OUR NEWSLETTERS

Thank you, your sign-up request was successful!
This email address is already subscribed, thank you!
Please provide a valid email address.
Please complete the CAPTCHA.
Oops. Something went wrong. Please try again later.