Explore the fascinating relics and works of art in “the little chapel that stood,” the oldest surviving church building in Manhattan.
St. Paul’s Chapel is a historic 18th-century church structure of Georgian design, where President George Washington historically prayed. Completed in 1766, the majestic building is the oldest of its kind in the Manhattan area and has been converted into a 9/11 tribute. Sit at a pew in the serene chapel to consider the lost lives from the World Trade Center tragedy that happened just across the street.
Admire the intricate architecture of the structure, which has a façade with brown frames and arched windows below a large white pediment. Four columns appear to guard the classical portico. Gaze up at the octagonal tower that contains a replica of the Choragic Monument of Lysicrates.
Enter through the large portal and look around the hall. It has a flat ceiling and hanging cut-glass chandeliers. Sit on Washington’s Pew, where the former president sat. It is opposite the Governor’s Pew that held the city’s first governor, George Clinton. Among the many famous visitors to this chapel are William IV of the United Kingdom and former president George H. W. Bush.
See the monument to Brigadier General Richard Montgomery, who died during the Battle of Quebec in 1775. Outside the church is a statue of St. Paul, the church’s patron saint.
Note that the church survived several catastrophes, notably the Great New York City Fire of 1776 and the 9/11 attacks in 2001. Following the latter, the church was used for memorials and homages. Read the moving tributes and explore the exhibits devoted to those who lost their lives when the Twin Towers fell.
St. Paul’s Chapel is at the southwestern corner of the City Hall Park in the southern part of Lower Manhattan. Ride the subway to the stations of the World Trade Center, Fulton Street or Cortland Street and walk a short distance to the chapel. Visit nearby attractions, such as One World Trade Center, Liberty Park and the New York Stock Exchange.