| Unlike the profusion of historic statuary in nearby Union Square Park, Stuyvesant
Square Park came late and aparingly in memorializing its notable figures with public art.
It was not until 1941 that the first of only two monuments made its debut a
life-size bronze, by Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, of peg-legged Peter Styvesant himself,
gazing sternly from a granite pedestal in the west park. It was, appropriately, a gift of
the Netherlands-America Foundation.
And, in an
event The New York Times headlined "Dvorak, Back Home at Last," Ivan
Mestrovics bronze statute of the composer, shown studying the score of his "New
World" Symphony, was dedicated in 1997 in the east park. It was a gift of the New
York Philharmonic, the Dvorak American Heritage Association, and the Stuyvesant Park
Neighborhood Association to the City of New York. Behind the monument and the historic
fence is the site of Dvoraks house at 327 East 17th Street, in a block
that the city named Dvorak Place in 1992.
park, lighted at night by the classical lampposts designed by the famous architect Henry
Bacon in 1907, is shared by young and old, rich and poor, immediate neighbors and those
who work nearby, visitors to the medical and religious institutions on the periphery
and the occasional tourist who manages to discover Stuyvesant Square, truly one of
Manhattans Hidden Treasures.