Five Mile Stone: A Historical Landmark in the Heart of New York City

Five mile stone new york ny – The Five Mile Stone in New York City stands as a testament to the city’s rich history and serves as a reminder of its humble beginnings. This iconic landmark has witnessed the growth and transformation of the metropolis over the centuries, and its significance continues to resonate with New Yorkers today.

Erected in 1806, the Five Mile Stone marked the boundary of the city limits at the time, which extended five miles from City Hall. Made of brownstone and measuring approximately four feet tall, it bears an inscription that reads “5 MILES FROM THE CITY HALL OF NEW YORK, 1806.”

History and Significance

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The Five Mile Stone in New York City holds immense historical significance as it marks the point where the original five-mile radius of the city was established in 1686. This stone played a crucial role in defining the boundaries and expansion of New York City.

The Five Mile Stone was erected in 1759 by the British military as a boundary marker. It was placed on the Boston Post Road, which was the main road connecting New York City to Boston, Massachusetts. The stone is made of sandstone and is approximately 4 feet tall and 2 feet wide.

Anecdotes and Stories

There are several interesting anecdotes and stories associated with the Five Mile Stone. One story tells of a group of British soldiers who were guarding the stone during the Revolutionary War. The soldiers were attacked by a group of American colonists, and the stone was damaged in the battle.

Another story tells of a group of children who were playing near the stone when they were attacked by a bear. The children were able to escape, but the bear was killed by a group of passersby.

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Location and Accessibility

The Five Mile Stone is located in Central Park, New York City, at the intersection of East 67th Street and Central Park West. It is situated near the southeast corner of the park, close to the Bethesda Terrace and the Central Park Zoo.To get to the stone, you can take the subway to the 68th Street

  • Hunter College station on the 6 line or the 59th Street
  • Columbus Circle station on the 1, A, B, C, and D lines. From there, it is a short walk to the park. You can also take a bus to the 65th Street and Central Park West stop on the M10, M66, or M72 lines.

Nearby landmarks and attractions include the Bethesda Terrace, the Central Park Zoo, the Loeb Boathouse, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Architectural Features: Five Mile Stone New York Ny

Five mile stone new york ny

The Five Mile Stone is a simple yet elegant structure, constructed from a single block of Manhattan schist, a type of metamorphic rock found in the region.

It is a short, squat pillar, measuring approximately 3 feet (0.91 meters) in height and 2 feet (0.61 meters) in diameter. The stone is roughly cylindrical in shape, with a slightly tapered top and bottom. It is smooth and unadorned, with no carvings or inscriptions.

Overall Appearance

The overall appearance of the Five Mile Stone is one of simplicity and strength. It is a sturdy and unyielding monument, standing as a testament to the skill and craftsmanship of the stonemasons who created it. The lack of ornamentation or embellishment gives the stone a timeless quality, ensuring that it will remain a relevant and meaningful landmark for generations to come.

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Cultural Impact

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The Five Mile Stone has been an integral part of New York City’s identity and history since its placement in 1769. It marks the point from which all distances on Long Island are measured, and its presence has shaped the city’s growth and development.

The stone has also been the subject of numerous stories and legends. One popular tale claims that the stone was once used as a hitching post for George Washington’s horse during the Revolutionary War. Another legend says that the stone was once stolen by a group of British soldiers, but they were caught and forced to return it.

Role in Shaping the City’s Identity

The Five Mile Stone has played a significant role in shaping New York City’s identity. It is a reminder of the city’s colonial past and its role as a major transportation hub. The stone is also a symbol of the city’s resilience, as it has survived numerous wars and natural disasters.

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Preservation and Restoration

Efforts to preserve and restore the Five Mile Stone began in the early 20th century. In 1915, the New York State Legislature passed a law designating the stone as a state historic site. In 1925, the stone was moved to its current location in Central Park, where it was placed on a pedestal and enclosed in a protective case.

Over the years, the stone has undergone several restorations. In 1957, the case was replaced with a new one made of Plexiglas. In 1983, the stone was cleaned and repaired. In 2001, the case was replaced again, this time with a more durable one made of bulletproof glass.

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Challenges and Controversies, Five mile stone new york ny

The preservation of the Five Mile Stone has not been without its challenges and controversies. In 1964, the stone was vandalized when someone threw a rock through the case. In 1976, the stone was stolen, but it was later recovered.

In 2017, the stone was damaged when a construction crew accidentally hit it with a crane.

There have also been controversies over the stone’s location. Some people have argued that it should be moved back to its original location on the Boston Post Road. Others have argued that it should remain in Central Park, where it is more accessible to the public.

Current Condition and Maintenance

The Five Mile Stone is currently in good condition. It is regularly cleaned and inspected by the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation. The case is made of bulletproof glass, which helps to protect the stone from vandalism and damage.

The Five Mile Stone is a valuable piece of New York City history. It is a reminder of the city’s early days and its role in the development of the United States. The stone is also a popular tourist attraction, and it is visited by thousands of people each year.

Last Word

Five mile stone new york ny

The Five Mile Stone has undergone several renovations over the years, including a major restoration in 1973. Today, it remains a beloved landmark and a popular destination for tourists and locals alike. Its historical significance and enduring presence make it a cherished symbol of New York City’s past, present, and future.

FAQ Summary

Where is the Five Mile Stone located?

The Five Mile Stone is located at the intersection of Fifth Avenue and 86th Street in Central Park, New York City.

What is the significance of the Five Mile Stone?

The Five Mile Stone marked the boundary of the city limits of New York City in 1806, which extended five miles from City Hall.

When was the Five Mile Stone erected?

The Five Mile Stone was erected in 1806.

What is the Five Mile Stone made of?

The Five Mile Stone is made of brownstone.