Gallery of Historical Artifacts

See the paintings, documents, coins and more that made history – and became a part of BNY Mellon’s story.


Liberty and Opportunity

Alexander Hamilton in military uniform, 18th c.

Alexander Hamilton in military uniform, 18th c.

Charles W. Peale painted a portrait of Hamilton in 1791 in civilian dress. An unidentified artist copied Peale's portrait of Hamilton but portrayed him in military uniform, shown here. New-York Historical Society, Gift of Duncan C. Pell.

Alexander Hamilton by John Trumbull, after 1804

Alexander Hamilton by John Trumbull, after 1804

Artist John Trumbull used his own portrait and a bust of Italian sculptor Ceracchi to create this painting. New-York Historical Society, Gift of Thomas Jefferson Bryan.

Alexander Hamilton Miniature Portrait

Alexander Hamilton Miniature Portrait

This portrait of Hamilton was painted for his daughter after Hamilton’s death in 1804. The frame is inscribed with her married name. A lock of Hamilton’s hair is visible through the glass on the reverse side. Collection of BNY Mellon.

Leading the Way

Engraving of the William Walton House, 1784

The Bank of New York’s first headquarters was located in the William Walton House between 1784 and 1787. It was demolished in 1881. Samuel Hollyer’s Old New York Views (1901-1912), New-York Historical Society Library.

Earthenware brick from the Walton House, 1784

Earthenware brick from the Walton House, 1784

This brick comes from the William Walton House, which served as the first location of The Bank of New York. It was erected in 1752 and demolished in 1881. New-York Historical Society Library, Gift of Grace Lyde Gordon.

Portrait of Alexander McDougall, 1786

Portrait of Alexander McDougall, 1786

John Ramage painted this portrait of Alexander McDougall. He served as a general in the Continental Army. Following the war, McDougall became the first president of The Bank of New York. New-York Historical Society, Purchase, The Louis Durr Fund.

BNY Mellon and the U.S. Government

George Washington to Samuel Huntington, 1789

George Washington to Samuel Huntington, 1789

In this letter, President Washington transmits to Samuel Huntington, former President of the Continental Congress and Governor of Connecticut, an act of Congress establishing the Treasury Department. Collection of BNY Mellon.

United States Treasury, Warrant No. 1, 1789

United States Treasury, Warrant No. 1, 1789

Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton obtained the first $20,000 of the $200,000 loan from The Bank of New York by means of United States Treasury Warrant No. 1. Gift of Merrill C. Berman. Collection of BNY Mellon.

Portrait of Alexander Hamilton, 1796

Portrait of Alexander Hamilton, 1796

This portrait of Alexander Hamilton is attributed to the English painter James Sharples. Collection of BNY Mellon.

Encouraging Innovation

J.W. Hill, “New York from Brooklyn Heights,” 1837

J.W. Hill, “New York from Brooklyn Heights,” 1837

J.W. Hill's depiction of New York City shows signs of industrialization and urban transformation during the mid-nineteenth century. New-York Historical Society. J.W. Hill, “New York from Brooklyn Heights,” 1837.

Fugio Cent, 1787

Fugio Cent, 1787

Benjamin Franklin created the design for the Fugio cent, the first coin authorized by Congress in 1787. But they were underweight and could not be circulated. These cents reached The Bank of New York's vault in 1789. Collection of BNY Mellon.

Flowing Hair Silver Dollar, 1795

“Flowing Hair” Silver Dollar, 1795

The “Flowing Hair” silver dollar was the first dollar coin produced by the U.S. Mint. This example was issued in 1795. New-York Historical Society.

Hamilton's Legacy

Tomb of Alexander Hamilton & Eliza Schuyler

Tomb of Alexander Hamilton & Eliza Schuyler

Artist Abram Hosier created this poignant illustration of the tombs of Eliza and Alexander Hamilton in 1872. New-York Historical Society.

Certificate for Subscription to Hamilton Estate, 1804

Certificate for Subscription to Hamilton Estate, 1804

Alexander Hamilton died in a duel with his political rival Aaron Burr. To keep his estate solvent, his friends formed a trust. The Bank of New York was the depository for the trust which remained secret for 125 years. Collection of BNY Mellon.

William Beard, Bulls and Bears in the Market, 1879

William Beard, Bulls and Bears in the Market, 1879

Hamilton’s legacy as the founder of American finance lives on today. William Beard’s depiction of the U.S. stock market uses bears and bulls to represent investors. New-York Historical Society, Purchase, Thomas Jefferson Bryan Fund.

Learn More About Our History Through Artifacts

EXPLORE OUR HISTORY

 

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