James Brown/Early 19th
When the James Brown House was built in 1817, the district was being
transformed from swamp and sandy hills into a fancy residential
neighborhood. Its first owner was James Brown, according to legend an
ex-slave who fought in the Revolutionary Army.
Emanuel Leutze's "Washington Crossing the Delaware" (1854). This romantic
vision of the historical event was painted in a studio in Germany. Photo
courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
James Brown may have been similar to this soldier at Washington's
knee. The real James Brown will never be
known, as most records of free Afro-Americans have been lost.
A waterfront tavern in the 1800s. Food was
provided free, as long as one drank house brew as well. Then as now, a plethora
of nationalities jostled ashore. The bully longshoreman with his hook harasses
the Chinaman as the African mediates.
A House bottle holds a
dolls carved wooden arm.
Whiskey jugs unearthed in the cellar.