St. Mark’s Church has stood at Second Avenue and 10th Street since 1799. Before that, in 1660, a much smaller family chapel was put up by Peter Stuyvesant, governor of New Amsterdam who owned the farm—or “Bouwerie”—on that site.
This 1853 illustration, from Valentine’s City of New York Guide Book, shows the current church building with its Greek Revival steeple, just before a portico was added in 1854. Hmm, was the East Side still so bucolic back in the middle of the 19th century? This depiction seems like a bit of an exaggeration.
Here is St. Mark’s 80 years later, in 1936. The church looks kind of spooky and barren, the facade missing the stone and brick we’re used to seeing today.
St. Mark’s circa 2008, a lovely landmark open to the public and a reminder of New York’s Dutch colonial past. There are few other places in the city where can you walk along tombstones that mark the burial sites of prominent New York citizens of the 18th and 19th centuries.