The Merchant's House Museum offers visitors a historical perspective of Manhattan that few have ever seen. The self-guided tours allow guests a first-hand look at what life was like for a wealthy merchants family in the mid-19th century.
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General admission - $10
Students and seniors (over 65) - $5
Members and Children 12 + under - free
Thursday to Monday: 12 noon to 5:00 p.m.
Tuesday & Wednesday: closed
special Hours + Information
Please arrive to the museum by 4pm to allow yourself time to enjoy your visit. Reservations are necessary for groups 10 persons and over. $16 minimum for credit cards.
The Merchant's House Museum -- New York City's only 19th-century family home preserved intact, inside and out -- offers a unique and elegant setting for private parties, weddings, special events, corporate functions, and photography or film shoots.
Getting married? Learn more about our new wedding packages, including ceremonies, receptions, showers, engagement parties, and photography.
For additional information, or to check the availability, please contact us at 212-777-1089 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
* Special Events
* Photography/Film Shoots
* The Space
* Capacity & Rental Fees
* Rental Guidelines
The Merchant's House is available for cocktail receptions, seated dinners, weddings, parties, and more. We provide a unique and elegant backdrop — the rest is up to you.
The space is also appropriate for lectures, corporate gatherings, conferences, or seminars.
If you prefer an event package highlighting this gem of Old New York, the Museum offers full-service receptions and afternoon teas, not to mention guided tours and lectures.
Note: the fragile nature of our historic building and its furnishings requires us to place certain restrictions on events. Please read our rental guildelines for details.
Each year, the Museum must raise funds to support restoration of its 1832 landmark building; conservation of the original collections of furniture, decorative arts, and textiles; and host public education programs for adults and schoolchildren.
Tax-deductible cash and stock gifts, large and small, from individuals and small businesses really do make a difference. We'd be honored to add you to our list of supporters.
How to Donate
We accept checks, credit cards, and cash, as well as stocks or securities. Please make checks out to the Merchant's House Museum and mail to 29 East Fourth Street, New York, NY 10003.
To arrange a credit card transaction, please call 212-777-1089. You can also make a secure credit card contribution online:
Goods & Services
We also appreciate donations of goods and services, which are fully tax-deductible. Please contact us if you would like to make a contribution.
HISTORY ABOUT THE MUSEUM
Following the death of Gertrude Tredwell in 1933 (the Tredwell family lived in the House for nearly 100 years), the Merchant’s House was turned into a museum by a relative, George Chapman. Chapman wanted to tell the story of the wealthy merchants – like Seabury Tredwell – who built the economic foundations of New York in the early 19th century. Because the Tredwells had made very few changes to the House since the 19th century, their decorative arts, furnishings, and even personal belongings like books and clothing, remained in the House to show how they lived.
Following Chapman’s death in 1959, the House was under the stewardship of The Decorator’s Club, and then by Joseph and Caroline Roberto, who undertook a major structural restoration of the building during the 1970s. In 1997, under the current Museum administration, an endowment was established for the Museum, thanks in part to a million dollar matching grant from the Vincent Astor Foundation. In 1999, the Merchant’s House became part of New York City’s Historic House Trust.
The home of the Tredwells tells more than just a story about when people began migrating into Manhattan to escape the growing congestion of Long Island. It was a time when today's section of Manhattan, once known as "The Bond Street Area," was a part of beautiful suburbia, and East 4th Street was a respectable tree-lined neighborhood with pristine row houses.
As a prominent hardware merchant of the 1840's, Seabury Tredwell raised his family in the beautiful Federal-style home. It is because of Gertrude Tredwell, the youngest child - who had lived in the home until her passing in 1933 - that a piece of history has been preserved.
The Greek Revival interiors of the home have undergone few renovations since being built in 1832. During Gertrude's lifetime (1840 - 1933) the interior and exterior architecture have remained largely unchanged. The parlor floor is a perfect example of a Greek Revival interior, and genuine period furnishings and decorations dress the high-ceilinged rooms. Operating as a museum since 1936, the home has been preserved with the original family furnishings, hardware, and possessions, allowing the visitors to experience the history of a wealthy merchant family and how they lived from day-to-day.
The museum has received interior and exterior landmark status from the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission, and is on the National Register of Historic Places. While in some areas of the home the original wall treatments remain flawless, there are other areas in need of a fresh coat of paint. To ensure that the color is matched, samples have been meticulously collected and analyzed, and the museum awaits the formal color restoration process.
Much has changed since the quiet, tree-lined street was alive with culture, but despite the neighborhood's transition, the museum has remained a home. Visitors are granted the opportunity to learn about the pretty young girl born to a wealthy merchant, affording a simple yet privileged lifestyle known to few at the time. There are many interesting details surrounding the Tredwell's family life, and it is up to the individual to visit the Merchant House Museum and discover what a grand life it must have been. The knowledgeable museum staff is kind and enthusiastic, answering whatever questions come to mind.
Throughout the year, the museum presents seasonal performances, presentations, lectures, and exhibits depicting life in the 1800s. Events include period story telling, reenactments and celebrations.
The museum accepts donations, as well as gifts to be sold in the museum gift shop or auctioned off at events. There is a nominal admission fee, and members receive complimentary admittance, invitations to private events, and special pricing on other scheduled events. Those visiting with a group of 10 or more are advised to contact the museum in advance.
Daily tours are self-guided and include a book filled with historical family facts and details. Visitors are asked to remain courteous, turning off cell phones and allotting a generous amount of time for guests to complete their tours.
Written by George Morales | Edited by Rebecca Benison
“Spirited” Fall Events at “Manhattan’s Most Haunted House”
NEW YORK – October 13, 2011 – This fall, the Merchant’s House Museum, “Manhattan’s Most Haunted House” (according to The New York Times), offers a series of sophisticated, spine-tingling, and historically accurate events for the Halloween season. Kicking off with an exhibition of spirit photography from the 19th-century and today (open through November 28), visitors will also have the chance to take a Candlelight Ghost Tour, participate in an 1865 Funeral Reenactment, listen to Spine-Tingling and True stories of the supernatural, and attend a concert of Songs of Death & Enchantment.
Starting Monday, October 17, the house will be set up as though patriarch Seabury Tredwell has just died, complete with a deathbed scene in the bedroom and funeral in the parlor. Costumed interpreters available for filming.