GEN-NYS-L ArchivesArchiver > GEN-NYS > 2007-11 > 1195956007
Subject: [GEN-NYS] Happy Evacuation Day!
Date: Sat, 24 Nov 2007 21:00:07 -0500
Tomorrow, Sunday, November 25 is the 224th Anniversary of Evacuation Day
Now almost forgotten, Evacuation Day, especially in the NYC area, was
considered a more important holiday than was the Fourth of July:
On November 25, 1783, the British Army boarded their naval vessels and
evacuated New York City (then only coterminous with New York County and
now coterminous with 5 counties), their wartime headquarters and their
last military position* in the United States during the Revolutionary
As the British sailed away south in retreat through the Narrows
separating Staten Island on the west and Long Island on the east, the
last thing they saw, as their ships sunk below the horizon, was the
Flag of the United States of America flying atop the Liberty Pole (an
extended flag pole) in the frontyard of the Dutch Reformed Church in
the Hamlet of New Utrecht, Town of New Utrecht, in the south-central
part of Kings County. Today this location is at Christopher Columbus
Boulevard (18th Avenue) and Liberty Pole Boulevard (84th Street) in the
Bensonhurst neighborhood in the south-central part of the New York City
Borough of Brooklyn. (The NYC Borough of Brooklyn is coterminous with
the NYS Kings County).
Replaced six times over the years, the 106' Liberty Pole is the last
remaining Liberty Pole in the original thirteen United States. On top
of the Pole is the original eagle and weathervane. The eagle is made of
wood and has a 5' wingspan. After two hundred and twenty-four years,
the weather has weakened it considerably and it has been reinforced
with iron bands.
The eagle has looked over the bay and seen many sailing vessels,
steamships and war ships. It has been said that the eyes of this golden
eagle has looked upon more change in the world's history than occurred
from the days of Nebuchadnezzar to the day when the eagle was raised.
Here's the URL for the New Utrecht Liberty Pole Association:
Here's the URL for the Dutch Reformed Church (recently celebrated its
330th anniversary on Saturday, October 27):
New Yorkers celebrated November 25 as Evacuation Day for well over a
century. But, with the warming of relations with England immediately
preceding World War I and R. H. Macy's publicity campaigns for a parade
celebrating another late November festival, Evacuation Day celebrations
I hope this information is useful or, at least, interesting.
Great Falls, MT & Jericho, NY
* Although the Treaty of Paris of 1783 said that Britain would evacuate
all posts within the new United States, they did not. Scattered posts
from present-day Vermont to present-day Michigan remained in British
hands until Jay's Treaty of 1795. Niagara in New York State was one of
these British held forts on U. S. soil.
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