New York in New York County, New York — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
India House / British Memorial Garden in Hanover Square
The handsome brownstone building facing Hanover Square, built in 1853, originally housed the Hanover Bank – making this a rare surviving bank building from pre-Civil War New York. Like so many banks, it was inspired by Italian Renaissance palaces – appropriately enough, since many such palaces had themselves been built for powerful Italian banking families. The building’s varied history includes service as New York’s Cotton Exchange and the offices of W.R. Grace and Company. Since 1914, it has been home to India House, a private club founded by shipping executive James A. Farrell and newspaperman Willard Straight. The club’s early members – businessmen engaged in foreign trade – chose the name “India House” to suggest the romance of exotic ports.
Hanover Square’s history as a public space dates back to the first years of the Dutch settlement. Named later for the British monarchy – the Hanoverians being the family of King George the Third, as well as the ancestors of the current Queen Elizabeth and Prince Charles – Hanover Square is one of
British Memorial Garden
Hanover Square has been transformed into the British Memorial Garden, a gift from the British community and its American friends to the people of New York City. The garden, designed by British landscape architects Julian and Isabel Bannerman, overflows with symbols, materials and plantings typical of the United Kingdom – from Scottish stone and Welsh slate, to City of London bollards, to an outline map of the British counties. Yew trees trimmed into abstract patterns offer a contemporary take on the traditional British topiary. The garden honors the memory of 67 British victims of the World Trade Center attacks, while also offering a place for the British community to gather for special events. British artist Anish Kapoor’s black granite sculpture Unity – symbolizing the unity between the United States and the United Kingdom – includes a light-reflecting chamber suggesting an eternal flame.
Erected by The Alliance for Downtown New York, Inc.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Notable Buildings. A significant historical year for this entry is 1853.
Location. 40° 42.274′ N, 74° 0.556′ W. Marker is in New York, New York, in New York County. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: One Hanover Square, New York NY 10004, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Queen Elizabeth II September 11th Garden (a few steps from this marker); The Cotton Exchange (within shouting distance of this marker); First Precinct Police Station (within shouting distance of this marker); 57 Stone Street (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Delmonico's Building (about 300 feet away); First Printing Press in the Colony of New York (about 300 feet away); 13 South William Street (about 300 feet away); Stone Street Historic District (about 400 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in New York.
More about this marker. A photograph of India House appears on the top right side of the marker. The marker’s lower left contains a photograph of Prince Charles with the caption “The British Memorial Garden is under the royal patronage of His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales, who, with his wife Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cornwall, visited the Garden on November 1, 2005, and laid the center stone for the garden pavement. Carved into the stone is the heraldic emblem of three feathers with the motto ‘Ich Dien’ (‘I serve’) a symbol of the Prince of Wales since the 14th century.”
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker. Take a tour of the markers in lower Manhattan erected by the Alliance for Downtown New York, Inc.
Also see . . . The 1854 India House -- No. 1 Hanover Square. "Daytonian in Manhattan" entry. (Submitted on April 10, 2020, by Larry Gertner of New York, New York.)
Credits. This page was last revised on April 10, 2020. It was originally submitted on June 6, 2009, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 1,400 times since then and 28 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on June 6, 2009, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey. 4, 5. submitted on December 13, 2018, by Larry Gertner of New York, New York. 6. submitted on December 14, 2018, by Larry Gertner of New York, New York.