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Fraunces Tavern Museum's mission is to educate the public and encourage the exploration of Colonial, Revolutionary War, Early Republic, and early New York City history. Housed in the building where George Washington said farewell to his officers at the close of the American Revolution, the Museum places particular emphasis on the history of the tavern and Lower Manhattan during the Revolutionary War period.
Fraunces Tavern Museum fulfills this mission by preserving and interpreting historic Fraunces Tavern; collecting, preserving and interpreting artifacts relating to the site and Colonial, Revolutionary War, Early Republic, and early New York City history; and presenting a variety of exhibitions, publications, and public and educational programs. The earlist parts of what is today the Fraunces Tavern Museum Complex date back to 1719 when Stephen DeLancey built the original structure as an elegant residence for his family. In 1762, the property was purchased by Samuel Fraunces, who turned it into one of the most popular taverns of the day. Best know as the site of Washington's farewell to his officers at the Revolution's close, the tavern also played a significant role in pre-Revolutionary activities, and after the war housed the offices of the Departments of Treasury, War and Foreign Affairs.