A 13-foot statue of Revolutionary War hero Nathan Hale stands tall in City Hall Park. Yet no one seems to know for sure where he was actually executed for spying on the British.
There are two competing locations. A plaque posted on a Banana Republic store at Third Avenue and 66th Street claims that the 21-year-old American spy was strung up on a gallows within 100 yards of that site on September 22, 1776.
The information comes from a British Officer’s diary, which stated that the hanging occurred at “the Royal Artillery Park near the Dove Tavern at the old Post Road, now Third Avenue. . . .”
But there’s another plaque, on East 44th Street and Vanderbilt Avenue, that says this is the location of Hale’s execution and that the “British Artillery Park” existed here.
The building the plaque (below) is affixed to belongs to the Yale Club. Hale was a Yale graduate, class of 1773.