ABRAHAM DePEYSTER, Hanover Square, 1999

by Kevin Walsh

For a fairly large fellow, Abraham DePeyster (1657-1728) has moved about quite a bit. George Bissell’s seated portrait of the Dutch Colonial 17th-Century New Amsterdam mayor was first installed in Bowling Green in 1896; after an outcry about his presence, he was donated to Franklin & Marshall College in Pennsylvania. However, s smaller replica was then placed in Bowling Green. DeP was then moved up Pearl Street to Hanover Square in 1976, and in 2006 the old gaffer was moved once again to Randall’s Island when Hanover Square underwent renovations. DeP has finally found what is hoped to be his permanent home in Thomas Paine Park just east of the intersection of Lafayette and Worth Streets.

DePeyster was born in the Dutch colony of New Amsterdam. He became a colonial merchant, chief justice, colonial governor, treasurer, and mayor from 1691-1694. 


Not only has DePeyster’s statue bounced around, a Financial District street named for him between Water and South Streets south of Maiden Lane has been off the maps since 1973, when Wall Street Plaza began construction. 

DeP shouldn’t feel too bad. Some of NYC’s statuary has moved around extensively, such as both Washington and Lincoln in Union Square; Prospect Park’s Lincoln has moved from Grand Army Plaza (Brooklyn) to the park’s Music Grove.

“Comment…as you see fit” in Comments.



Van Gasse April 5, 2017 - 6:15 pm

What about the statue of Dr. Josef Mengele, that stood by the main entrance to Maimonides Hospital in Borough Park? It mysteriously vanished recently, as did the other one many years earlier. Originally they were a pair, flanking the entrance to the obstetrics unit, as a tribute to his invaluable contributions to twins research. If anyone can offer insights into this mystery it’d be most greatly appreciated. Repeated calls to Dove Hikind’s office go unanswered, so I really can’t help but wonder what’s going on. Thanks!

Kevin Walsh April 6, 2017 - 11:56 am

I CANNOT believe a statue of Josef Mengele was at Maimonides Hospital.

Joe Fliel April 6, 2017 - 9:58 pm

Van Gasse was being an ass, Kevin. His pathetic attempt at being edgy, clever and quirky failed miserably. Planking on third rails can have deleterious effects on one’s neurons.

NY2AZ April 7, 2017 - 10:34 am


I think you’ve been pranked by some hipster/activist/never trump type who takes offense at just about anything. You know the type: history is just a construct that celebrates dead white males. Delete his comments because this type is waging a culture war with the aim of deleting American history.


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