The historic Valentine-Varian House in The Bronx houses the Museum of Bronx History. The museum is small and humble, worth a visit as part of a bigger expedition. And the 1758 farmhouse sits on a green plot that counts as a park.
Revolutionary War history is everywhere around here. For just one small example, we crossed Rochambeau Ave. while walking here from Moshulu Parkway. But the Bronx River Soldier statue depicts a Union soldier from the Civil War, a conflict to which this place has no connection whatsoever.
The sculpture by John Grignola was moved here in 1970 after being scooped out of the Bronx River, into which it had tumbled from the pier where it had been standing guard. There's an impressive monument to Grignola at his final resting place in Woodlawn Cemetery, the graveyard where the Soldier had originally been meant to stand.
Behind the house is a small garden.
The house is adjacent to the Williamsbridge Oval, a large oddball of a park which we shall visit next.
All photos © Jon Sobel, Critical Lens Media