by Christina Parrella, 10/16/2012 [Updated 02/04/2016]
Photo: Tom Stoelker
65 Jumel Terrace, 212-923-8008, Washington Heights, Manhattan
While much of the Revolutionary War in NYC occurred in Lower Manhattan, Washington Heights saw its fair share of action too. Morris-Jumel Mansion was headquarters for George Washington during the Battle of Harlem Heights, the Continental Army's first battleground victory in 1776. The estate's hilltop location provided the general key military advantages, since it features views of the Harlem River, the Long Island Sound, New York Harbor, the Hudson River and the Jersey Palisades. Following the war, in 1790, Washington returned to the mansion to dine with members of his cabinet, including two future presidents: John Adams and Thomas Jefferson.
In later years, the mansion served as an inn and had numerous owners, including French wine merchant Stephen Jumel and his wife, Eliza. After her husband's death in 1832, Eliza married controversial vice president Aaron Burr—who killed Alexander Hamilton in a duel—in the front parlor of the mansion. (She and Burr remained married for four years; curiously, they were formally divorced on the same day in 1836 that Burr died.) Now a museum and purportedly one of the oldest structures in Manhattan, the mansion offers visitors a glimpse into the colonial days. See the rooms where Aaron Burr was married, the founding fathers feasted and George Washington slept.