Karen Q's Patriot Tours NYC

Karen Q's Patriot Tours NYC History like you never learned it in school! The true story of the Founding of America. Forget those boring books and classes, experience history as if you are really there.
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Reawaken your patriotism and love of America! See us on the Travel Channels' Mysteries at the Museum! Since 2005, we've been leading our customers through the most historic parts of the city, along streets laid in the 1700’s and into national historic landmarks and are a daily presence in Lower Manhattan! We know the story of every nook and cranny of the Southern tip of the Island and we can’t wait to share it with you. Our Research To prepare for our tours we comb through hundreds of archival documents. Newspapers, broadsides, pamphlets, personal papers and prints all go into our storytelling of the city’s past. We visit research libraries and historic sites throughout the region to flesh out our understanding of events and people. We virtually live in the time period, recreating it in a way that allows us to answer all of your questions, no matter how obscure. Your Tour Experience We keep our group sizes small to give you personal attention. Each tour is a unique experience as we tailor it to meet the needs of your group. As the tour moves along we pay attention to your questions and what you seem most interested in so that we change the narrative accordingly. No two tours are exactly the same! Plus, if you have an ancestor or specific person or event you’d like to know about, let us know before the tour and we’ll be sure to include it for you. Your Guide Karen Q has spent nearly fifteen years immersed in NYC’s early history. What began as a hobby, reading original documents, became a passion when she learned the stories of people long forgotten who did amazing things to create the city and nation we have today. In 2005 she began the Revolutionary Era walking tour to honor those great NYers. At the request of enthusiastic customers she added the Civil War Tour and the Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr Tour. Karen has spoken at meetings of the NYC Chapter of the DAR (Daughters of the American Revolution) and is a regular speaker for the Queens Public Library. She is also an historical consultant to The Travel Channel’s “Mysteries at the Museum”, Fordham University Radio WFUV and AM New York (newspaper).

Mission: We make American History accessible and REAL!

Operating as usual

December 1776 - General Washington and the Americans are facing the harshest times imaginable. They have been pushed out...
12/15/2020

December 1776 - General Washington and the Americans are facing the harshest times imaginable. They have been pushed out of NY by British General Howe. The Continental Congress is indecisive and impoverished and unable to supply them. One of the coldest Winters on record is in full force and the soldiers' enlistments are expiring on the last day of the year.

How will Washington keep everyone together to continue the fight?

Author Thomas Paine (Common Sense) releases the first in a series of pamphlets titled "The American Crisis". It begins:

"THESE are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands it now deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives everything its value. Heaven knows how to put a proper price upon its goods, and it would be strange indeed if so celestial an article as freedom should not be highly rated. "

Paine continues on, discussing the current panic and crisis in the American Colonies.

"...their peculiar advantage is, that they are the touchstones of sincerity and hypocrisy, and bring things and men to light, which might otherwise have lain forever undiscovered. In fact, they have the same effect on secret traitors, which an imaginary apparition would have upon a private murderer. They sift out the hidden thoughts of man, and hold them up in public to the world."

Then he reminds everyone of the differences between Loyalists (Tory) and Patriots (Whig).

"I once felt all that kind of anger, which a man ought to feel, against the mean principles that are held by the Tories: a noted one, who kept a tavern at Amboy, was standing at his door, with as pretty a child in his hand, about eight or nine years old, as I ever saw, and after speaking his mind as freely as he thought was prudent, finished with this unfatherly expression, "Well! give me peace in my day." Not a man lives on the continent but fully believes that a separation must some time or other finally take place, and a generous parent should have said, "If there must be trouble, let it be in my day, that my child may have peace;" and this single reflection, well applied, is sufficient to awaken every man to duty. "

I hope you will join me here on FB this Thursday, 12/15 at 7pm ET for "Mrs. Q LIVE". Mrs. Q will take you step by step through Paine's remarkable pamphlet and explain the effect it had on the downtrodden American army. You will be inspired by Paine's words this holiday season.

Happy Birthday, John Jay! December 12, 1745Jay was born in NY into a family of French and Dutch colonists. He attended K...
12/12/2020

Happy Birthday, John Jay! December 12, 1745

Jay was born in NY into a family of French and Dutch colonists. He attended Kings College (Columbia U today) at 14 and at 23 was admitted to the bar and practiced law.

Jay married William Livingston's (a prominent NY/NJ lawyer) daughter Sarah in 1774. The same year he became a member of the NY Committee of Correspondence and a delegate to the Constitutional Convention.

The Jays had six children and traveled together throughout Europe during the Revolutionary War. The Jays served as diplomats, developing support for America in the conflict against Britain. At the conclusion of the war, Jay signed the Treaty of Paris which formally ended the American Revolution.

After the war, Jay helped write the Federalist Papers with James Madison and Alexander Hamilton. President Washington appointed him Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. Jay stepped down from the position after six years due to health concerns. He ran for and won, the Governorship of NY. While in office he signed legislation that, at last, eliminated slavery in the state.

One of New York's finest Founding Fathers!

Thank you for joining me this afternoon for a walk through the Bowling Green and Battery historic areas. After we finish...
12/11/2020

Thank you for joining me this afternoon for a walk through the Bowling Green and Battery historic areas. After we finished our tour I took some pictures for you. It was a gorgeous afternoon and the skyline was spectacular!

12/11/2020

NYC Virtual Tour of historic Bowling Green and Battery Park.
If you enjoy this tour, please consider donating via paypal.me/patriottours
Thank you for watching!

Toward the end of the video I misread the map at Castle Clinton! Those date markers show the expansion of the train station and where artifacts were found. Oops!

Thanks to our most excellent friend, Bill Miecuna, for this color print of the Government House that stood at the foot o...
12/11/2020

Thanks to our most excellent friend, Bill Miecuna, for this color print of the Government House that stood at the foot of Broadway. Built in 1790, it was intended to be a home for President George Washington. When the Federal Government moved to Philadelphia it became the home of NY Governor George Clinton and later a customs house.

The second picture is what it looks like today!

Be sure to join me today at noon ET. Where, in this spot, I will be starting our walk through the historic area around the Bowling Green for a look at NYC's nearly 400-year history!

12/11/2020
Mrs Q LIVE

It's 1783 and the war is over! Mrs. Q is back in NYC.

12/10/2020
A question I am often asked: Why should we care about what happened hundreds of years ago? We are so much more advanced ...
12/09/2020

A question I am often asked: Why should we care about what happened hundreds of years ago? We are so much more advanced than people were then. Were we?

What was going on in NYC in December 1769, 251 years ago? A heated debate about ELECTION FRAUD! Yes, indeed, the printing presses were burning up printing various handbills and broadsides critical of the election that took place back in January.

According to critics of the election, votes were bought, people were promised jobs for votes, those who lived in one ward and worked in another voted in both, and some who were not even qualified to vote did so!

Was any of it true? Probably!

A Broadside titled "Liberty", published January 23, 1769, contains the sworn affidavit of Andrew Marschalk. He claims that Sons of Liberty leader Isaac Sears "came to his Father's House, and in his Hearing told his Father, that if he voted against Mr. Scott, that the Board of Commerce would give him the Inspection of all the Flour they shipp'd; and that if the ensuing Assembly did not appoint him sole Inspector, they the Board of Commerce would; but if he voted for Mr. Scott, they would not employ him at all, or Words to that Effect."

It continues: "From the Facts set forth in the above Affidavit, every impartial Man must be convinced of the scandalous Practices made Use of by the Friends of Mr. Scott's Opponents: Practices utterly destructive of the Freedom of Elections and tending to debase the Electors to the most abject State of Slavery and Dependence."

By December, the accusations were still flying that the election had been fixed and the resulting Assembly members were corrupt.

Have things changed very much?

On December 16, a broadside will appear that will make NY's political issues an international spectacle! I will share it with you on that date. Be sure to like and follow if you don't already so you won't miss it.

Alonzo Chappel was an American painter born in NYC in 1828. You might not realize it, but you've seen many of his painti...
12/08/2020

Alonzo Chappel was an American painter born in NYC in 1828. You might not realize it, but you've seen many of his paintings depicting the American Revolution and 19th Century American History. I used his painting of Washington's Farewell to his Officers in a post last week.

Here are a few more, along with a picture of Chappel.

Happy Anniversary to Elizabeth and Alexander Hamilton!(A week early, oops! 😳 )
12/07/2020

Happy Anniversary to Elizabeth and Alexander Hamilton!
(A week early, oops! 😳 )

When we enter Trinity Church Graveyard from the left of the entrance, we pass a marker placed there by the NYS Society o...
12/06/2020

When we enter Trinity Church Graveyard from the left of the entrance, we pass a marker placed there by the NYS Society of the Cincinnati. It honors all of the Revolutionary War officers buried in the various graveyards owned by the church.

What is the Society of the Cincinnati?

When I first heard it mentioned as a young girl, I wondered why an organization meant to honor General Washington was named for a city in Ohio! Later I learned that the city, founded in 1788, was named for the Society of the Cincinnati. The Society was created in 1783 and named for a Roman, Lucius Quinctius Cincinnatus. General Washington was called the "modern-day" Cincinnatus.

How does this all fit together?

Cincinnatus was a Roman statesman and military leader of the early Republic. During a time of civil upheaval (around 460 BC), he was called upon to take control of the Republic. He left his small farm, traveled to Rome, and took dictatorial control of Rome. He quickly restored order and rather than stay on, with near-complete authority over Romans, he surrendered his position and went back to his farm. He became legendary in Roman History as an example of civic virtue, humility, modesty, and dedication to the greater good rather than to his own power.

On December 4, 1783, General Washington had a final meeting with his officers of the Revolutionary War in NYC at Fraunces Tavern. As the General and Commander, under commonly understood aristocratic rules at the time, he had the ability to declare himself King and to name all of his officers Lords. Instead, on December 23 he arrived at Annapolis, MD, where the Continental Congress was in session. He resigned his military commission and returned to Mount Vernon a man equal under the law to every other American. The officers of the Continental Army all did the same.

King George III was incredibly impressed and called Washington the finest man in all the world. (Washington will do this again after serving two terms as President of the USA.)

The Society of the Cincinnati was formed in 1783 by Revolutionary War officers who served under General Washington's command. Officers who served with French forces under Rochambeau or DeGrasse were also included.

Today, the Society's membership is made up of descendants of those officers.

Thank you, everyone who joined me today. I'm at the NYSE; here are some pictures to enjoy!
12/04/2020

Thank you, everyone who joined me today. I'm at the NYSE; here are some pictures to enjoy!

12/04/2020

Washington's Farewell Address 1783 Frances Tavern NYC
If you enjoy this tour please support me at paypal.me/patriottours or venmo 9177164908
Thank you!!

Join me LIVE today at noon (ET), on the anniversary of General Washington's Farewell Address at Fraunces Tavern.  Here a...
12/04/2020

Join me LIVE today at noon (ET), on the anniversary of General Washington's Farewell Address at Fraunces Tavern. Here are a couple of engravings to help us to imagine it as it was that historic day!

We will take a virtual walk together through 1783 NYC, including the area around Fraunces Tavern, and the site of James Rivington's Printing Shop, where a stunning event took place just before the General's farewell.

See you at noon ET!

12/04/2020

Mrs Q Live - A Vindication of the Rights of Woman
Please support Mrs. Q if you enjoy this video:
Paypal.me/patriottours
Thank-you!

12/03/2020
I've been working on a project that requires looking at old US History textbooks. I thought, like me, you might be inter...
12/02/2020

I've been working on a project that requires looking at old US History textbooks. I thought, like me, you might be interested in how the subject was presented to students before the 20th Century.

These are from "Abridged History of the United States or Republic of America" by Emma Willard, 1848.

1. The subject of this work is the United States of America; or, as those States are sometimes called, Republic or Nation of America. What constitutes a nation? First, there must be a country, with the natural divisions of land and water; second, there must be men, women, and children to inhabit that country; and third, those inhabitants must be bound together in one, by living under a common government, which extends its protection over all, and which all are bound to obey.

2. To every nation there belongs a history: For whenever the inhabitants of any large portion of the earth are united under one government, important public events must there have taken place. The record of these events constitutes the history of that country.

9. The government of this vast nation, which now contains more than seventeen millions of inhabitants, is a Federative Republic. It is federative , because in it there are several separate, independent states, confederated under one head, or general government. It is a republic because the rulers are chosen by the people. The manner in which they are to be chosen, and in which they are bound to administer the government, is set forth in the Constitution of the United States. This therefore, should be early learned, and thoroughly understood by every American.

If you've been following me for a while you know that one of my favorite artists of 18th Century England is William Hoga...
12/01/2020

If you've been following me for a while you know that one of my favorite artists of 18th Century England is William Hogarth. From the 1730s through the 1760s he created artwork that satirized, criticized, and represented life in London.

This engraving is called "Night" and is from the series "Four Times of the Day". It takes place in the Charing Cross Road in the area called Whitehall.

At the front left, in the window, is a barber who appears to be drunk, holding his customer's nose like a pig while shaving him. Blood drips onto the customer's apron. The sign above his shop reads "Shaving, Bleeding, and teeth drawn with a touch". (Surgeons and Barbers were part of the same profession from 1540 to 1745!)

A homeless family is huddled beneath the window shelf

On the right, a family is moving out of their home in the middle of the night to escape their debts.

My favorite piece of the engraving is the two men heading home carrying the lantern. The man on the left is a drunk Freemason. The woman in the window above him is dumping a chamber pot on his head! He is meant to be Sir Thomas de Veil, who was a magistrate known for his strict sentencing of gin-sellers in spite of being a big drinker himself. (Hypocrite.) It's also believed that he is the inspiration for Henry Fielding's character "Justice Squeezum" in the play "The Coffee-House Politician" 1730.

You might know Henry Fielding's novel "The History of Tom Jones, a Foundling" 1746. It was made into a movie in 1763 (1963 ;-) ) starring Albert Finney and, of course, the singer "Tom Jones" took his name from the title character!

Corruption was rampant. Hogarth and Fielding were two of its finest critics!

11/28/2020
In the papers: November 1775.  Maj Gen Richard Montgomery takes the British fort at Montreal!John Holt's Journal or Gene...
11/27/2020

In the papers: November 1775. Maj Gen Richard Montgomery takes the British fort at Montreal!

John Holt's Journal or General Advertiser (11/30/1775) has a story about Cap. Henry Livingston passing through NYC from Montreal on his way to Philadelphia with news that Montgomery was victorious there on November 13. The Fort surrendered to Montgomery.

Livingston remarks that Gen. Guy Carlton (British) has bought all the gunpowder available and taken it with his forces to Quebec. Col. Benedict Arnold and his forces have already arrived at Quebec and Montgomery is also on his way there. Capt. Livingston says they expect the fort at Quebec will surrender.

But Quebec doesn't surrender. And in December, General Montgomery will be lost in the battle that takes place there.

Let's take a minute to remember the brutal Winter conditions under which these men traveled and fought.

The print shows Montgomery's troops departing Crown Point, NY the previous August for the November battle at Montreal.

11/25/2020

Evacuation Day Tour of NYC. Fast Forward to about 5 mins in, past the early section without audio! I start again there.Apologies!!!

Today is the 237th Anniversary of Evacuation Day! November 25, 1783, starting at 1:00pm, General Washington, his officer...
11/25/2020

Today is the 237th Anniversary of Evacuation Day!

November 25, 1783, starting at 1:00pm, General Washington, his officers, and remaining troops made their triumphant re-entry to NYC after seven years of exile.

Washington lost NYC to the British in the Fall of 1776. For the next seven years, it served as their headquarters for the Revolutionary War. Finally, on this day, they packed up and left the city for good.

Here is a first-hand account of the events.

"At eight o'clock on the morning the troops which had been stationed at McGowan's Pass (Harlem), the light infantry acting as main guard, were marched to the Bowery Lane (Chinatown) in the upper ward, and were then halted until one o'clock... "

"Gen. Washington halted the army near the old tea-water pump, (Brooklyn Bridge area today) when the officers of the revolution formed into a line, and marched through the British army, then in the fields, (now City Hall Park) which was on the eve of embarking—while the American army proceeded down Pearl street and Wall-street to Trinity Church, (then burnt from the fire of 1776) and there again met those officers and fired a salute of 13 guns."

Joining Washington was Major General Knox, and the officers of the Army, marching eight across, followed by the Governor and Lt. Governor.

And let's not forget Mrs. Day on Murray Street who hung her American Flag out before the full departure of the British.

The Sherriff, "Cunningham incensed at the premature display, came there to pull it down. He was met at the door of the tavern by Mrs. Day, a stout, athletic woman, very loyal in her sentiments, who refused him admittance, and upon his attempting to force his way into the house, a scuffle ensued between them, in which she boxed his ears warmly, made the powder fly from his hair, and caused him to beat a hasty retreat, amid the jeers and laughter of some few spectators who were present at the scene."

Join me today at 1:00 for a LIVE walk along the parade route. I'll share some great stories of those victorious, patriotic Americans, and Evacuation Day.

*quotes from I.N. Stokes "Iconography of Manhattan Island" Vol 5., p1173-1175

Address

City Hall Park
New York, NY
11104

Subway, Bus and Taxi

Opening Hours

Monday 09:00 - 17:00
Tuesday 09:00 - 17:00
Wednesday 09:00 - 17:00
Thursday 09:00 - 17:00
Friday 09:00 - 17:00

Telephone

(917) 716-4908

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We Love NYC History!

Since 2005, we've been leading our customers through the most historic parts of the city, along streets laid in the 1700’s and into national historic landmarks and are a daily presence in Lower Manhattan! We know the story of every nook and cranny of the Southern tip of the Island and we can’t wait to share it with you. Our Research To prepare for our tours we comb through hundreds of archival documents. Newspapers, broadsides, pamphlets, personal papers and prints all go into our storytelling of the city’s past. We visit research libraries and historic sites throughout the region to flesh out our understanding of events and people. We virtually live in the time period, recreating it in a way that allows us to answer all of your questions, no matter how obscure. Your Tour Experience We keep our group sizes small to give you personal attention. Each tour is a unique experience as we tailor it to meet the needs of your group. As the tour moves along we pay attention to your questions and what you seem most interested in so that we change the narrative accordingly. No two tours are exactly the same! Plus, if you have an ancestor or specific person or event you’d like to know about, let us know before the tour and we’ll be sure to include it for you. Your Guide Karen Q has spent fifteen years immersed in NYC’s early history. What began as a hobby, reading original documents, became a passion when she learned the stories of people long forgotten who did amazing things to create the city and nation we have today. In 2005 she began the Revolutionary Era walking tour to honor those great NYers. At the request of enthusiastic customers she added the Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr Tour and The Revolutionary War Spies Tour. Karen is the author of the forthcoming book “Theodosia Burr: Teen Witness to the Founding of the New Nation”, Lerner Books, Spring 2020. She has spoken at meetings of the NYC Chapter of the DAR (Daughters of the American Revolution) and is a regular speaker for the Queens Public Library. She is also an historical consultant for fiction authors as well as Fordham University Radio WFUV and AM New York (newspaper).

Karen has appeared on more than twenty episodes of The Travel Channel’s “Mysteries at the Museum” and will be seen later in 2019 on “America Unearthed”.