Tuesday, April 13, 2010

The Colored Seamen's Home On 2 Dover Street: 1863

Excerpts from "The Reign of the Rabble," New York Times, Wednesday, July 15, 1863 
In Roosevelt-street, near Pearl-street, about 4 p.m., an immense crowd reassembled, and it was evident that they required but a spark to enkindle the most angry passions.  The character of the population in that vicinity is one well calculated to take the most active and energetic part in the general riot.  Several negro habitations have been entirely demolished in that neighborhood, and the poor tenants turned into the streets helpless.  The poor creatures look perfectly bewildered -- they are unable to designate between friend or foe. Many have lost all they ever had in the world, and some of them may become charges on the county.  The crowd carried away the weather boards, and every part of the negro habitations that can be detached to make firewood of......
 At 6 o'clock P.M., the building, No. 64 [probably a typo for 74 --ed.] and 76 Roosevelt-street, occupied by Mr. BEVERLY as a colored seaman's boarding house, was attacked by the rioters.  The inmates were taken from the premises, which were robbed and then set on fire. WILLIAM ARMSTRONG, WM. HEATH and THEODORE TURNER, all boarding there, were badly beaten. They were sent to the New-York Hospital.
The colored boarding house of ALBRO LYONS, No. 20 Vandewater-street, was attacked by the rioters about 6 1/2 o'clock P.M., the doors broken open and the windows entirely demolished; nine of the inmates were injured.
A man named JAMES SCOTT, aged 40 years, residing at No. 81 Roosevelt-st., in the rear, was badly injured by the rioters; he was taken to the hospital.
About the same time THOMAS JOHNSON, a colored man, had one of his arms broken by jumping from the third story window of a house No. 62 Roosevelt-street, while the house was on fire.  He was rescued from the rioters by the police and was taken to the station-house . 
WILLIAM W. HILL, also colored, was dangerously injured by leaping out of a third-story window of the same house.
MARY WILLIAMS, a colored woman, 24 years old, while being pursued by the infuriated mob, jumped from a window of No. 74 Roosevelt-street to the pavement, and was terribly injured -- the building was then on fire.  She was taken to Bellevue Hospital.
About 7 o'clock P.M. the house No. 2 Dover-street, occupied by WM. P. POWELL, as a Colored Seamens' House, was attacked by the rioters, the doors and windows broken, the occupants driven out and the furniture destroyed.  The occupants were rescued by the Police and taken to the Station-house for safety.
At 6  o'clock P.M. the house No. 11 James-slip, occupied by JAMES E. VALENTINE as a liquor store, was attacked by the riotous mob in consequence of a colored woman taking refuge there; she escaped when the rioters entered the place, who stole and destroyed all the contents.
The mob took an iron safe from the store of Mr. BEARELY [Beverly?], No. 74 Roosevelt-street, and Officers PENDERGAST and SWEENY, of the Fourth Ward, took it from them.
About 3 o'clock P.M., a mob of from five to seven hundred persons commenced an attack on some colored persons, in Baxter-street, near Park [in the Sixth Ward]. They then went to the dining saloon of Mr.. CROOK, Chatham-street, to beat the colored waiters. Capt. JOURDON, sergeants WALSH and McGIVEN, with a platoon of men, were promptly on hand and dispersed the crowd. They then left for the Fourth Precinct. Mr.. CROOK was compelled to close his place [and] no persons were assaulted or injured there.
At 5 o'clock P.M., a colored woman named ELIZABETH HENNESSY, while standing at the corner of Mott and Pell streets [in the Sixth Ward], was struck on the head by an unknown ruffian, receiving a severe wound. She was taken to the New-York Hospital.
A gang of nearly 500 rioters attacked the colored people residing at Nos. 104 and 105 Park street [in the Sixth Ward], drove them into the street, assaulting them with stones and other missiles; the Sixth Ward Police rescued the blacks, and took them to the station-house. Capt. JONEDON, Sergts WALSH, QUINN, and KENNEDY, with a force of men, soon dispersed the mob.
JOHN BROWN, a colored man, 40 years of age, of No. 74 Roosevlt-street [sic], was attacked late at night in the own [sic] house by a mob, and severely beaten about his head and face. He escaped from the ruffians and ran to the station-house for protection.

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