(Photograph by John L. Pierrepont in the collection of the Long Island Historical Society Now the Brooklyn Historical Society) http://brooklynhistory.org/library_collections.html http://www.prospectpark.org/hist/archives.html#about The Prospect Park Archives was established by the Prospect Park Alliance in 1996 to support the restoration of the Park by making accessible an accurate record of its history. Since then, the Archives has amassed close to 20,000 images, including historic and contemporary photographs, a growing digital image collection and primary and secondary materials that chart the history of Prospect Park from its original plan in 1859 through its current restoration. The Old Stone House, J.J. Byrne Park Third Street btwn Fourth & Fifth Avenues Brooklyn, NY 11215 In the Park Slope/Gowanus neighborhood of Brooklyn stands a replica of a Dutch stone farmhouse with a very rich history. The Old Stone House is now an Historic Interpretive Center in J.J. Byrne Park. The original house was built by Nicholas Vechte beside the Gowanus Creek in 1699. Its two-foot thick wall of fieldstone and brick and its heavily shuttered windows protected the family. The Vechtes prospered, farming the rich bottomland beneath the Heights of Guam and ferrying produce to market in Manhattan. During the Battle of Brooklyn, Long Island, August 27th, 1776, the sturdy house and its strategic position made it the focus of the most dramatic event of the day. The Americans had suffered disastrous losses. The British occupied the house and turned it into an artillery position to fire on the defeated American soldiers. The Americans were fleeing for their lives to the safety of American forts across the Gowanus Creek. The house was held by an estimated 2,000 British and hired Hessian soldiers. Against this stronghold, some 400 of the Maryland Brigade threw themselves in six attacks, gaining the house twice, but, ultimately, they were repulsed. Nevertheless, it was their valor, witnessed by Gen. Washington and his troops, that hardened the resolve of the American Army. That day, close to three quarters of those Marylanders made the ultimate sacrifice. In 1797, the house was sold to the Cortelyou family. Almost a century later it became the first clubhouse of the Brooklyn team of the National Base Ball League, later known as the Brooklyn Dodgers. By the 1890s the house had been demolished, but was rebuilt with the original stones in the 1930s to serve as a sports facility in the newly opened J.J. Byrne Park. After two more restorations in the 1970s and 1990s, the house is once again open to the public. Inside this replica of the original house is an educational center offering changing exhibits on the first floor and a community room on the second floor. The Old Stone House Historic Interpretive Center is operated by the First Battle Revival Alliance, named in honor of that "first battle" of the newly formed United States, the 1776 Battle of Brooklyn. The organization conducts public programs, group lessons and tours, afterschool programs, and special events. Mailing Address: P.O. Box 150613 Brooklyn, NY 11215 Open to the public: Saturday, Noon - 3pm Wednesday, Thursday & Friday, by appointment. Call to confirm. For information, call (718) 768-3195 Related Links http://nyc.gov/cgi-bin/exit.pl?url=http://www.oldstonehouse.org/ http://www.nyfreedom.com/oldstonehouse.htm Historic House Trust of New York City..Museums Bronx Bartow-Pell Mansion Poe Cottage Valentine-Varian House Van Cortlandt House Brooklyn Lefferts Homestead Lott House Wyckoff House Manhattan Dyckman Farmhouse Gracie Mansion Little Red Lighthouse Merchant's House Museum Morris-Jumel Mansion Swedish Cottage Marionette Theatre Queens King Manor Museum Kingsland Homestead Queens County Farm Museum Staten Island Alice Austen House Conference House Historic Richmond Town Seguine Mansion Return to PHOTO Main Return to BROOKLYN Main