Colonial New York: Looking for Mr. Van Cortlandt


 Mysteriously, a doctor who had been living in New York Colony finds himself transported to modern Van Cortlandt Park in The Bronx.  He remembers the area as the place where he lived, the Van Cortlandt plantation, and he is struggling to make sense of why everything looks so different.  He will be your tour guide as he leads your class on a journey to search for the people and places he knew in the past-while revealing the world of rural 18th century New York.

 In this highly interactive field trip, your students will learn about the role that our region played in global trade and the Dutch influence on colonial New York.  They will learn about the lives and lasting contributions of enslaved Africans in the development of New York and witness their legacy in the landscape of today's Van Cortlandt Park.

 This program was designed to address key concepts from the NYC Dept. of Education Social Studies Scope & Sequence for Grade 4.

Offered At

The Van Cortlandt House Museum

The Van Cortlandt House Museum in The Bronx was built in 1748 for one of New York Colony’s elite families, the Van Cortlandts. But it was also home to generations of enslaved people, who operated the plantation that surrounded the house. The museum's educational programs use the objects in our collection and the lives of its historic inhabitants to make the world of 18th century New York come alive.


Where do buses drop off?
School buses park on Broadway by the entrance to Van Cortlandt Park. The entrance to Van Cortlandt Park is opposite 6035 Broadway. Typing “6035 Broadway, Bronx” into your GPS device will take you there directly. The museum is the stone building that is visible from the park entrance and is only a 1-2 minute walk from where buses drop off.

Is the museum accessible by public transportation?
Yes, there are several ways to get to the house by public transportation:
By subway: #1 train to 242nd Street Station
By bus: Bx9 to West 244th Street
BxM3 Express Bus to 244th Street - from mid-town Manhattan with a stop at the Museum's entrance to Van Cortlandt Park
Metro-North Hudson River Line to Marble Hill Station, transfer to the Bx9 bus or #1 subway as above.

Is there a gift shop?
Yes, Van Cortlandt House has a Museum shop stocked with colonial toys, games, pencils, rulers, gifts and postcards. We also sell cold beverages.



Colonial Times, Revolutionary War, Slavery, 18th Century, African American History, Economics


33 students, 1 chaperone per 3 students


90 min.


Field Trip


3, 4, 5

Price Options

$5.00 per Person for School Group