This week on The Historians Podcast, regular New York Almanack contributor Jim Kaplan has the story of the Buttonwood Agreement, the founding document of the New York Stock Exchange. [Read more…] about The Founding Document of the NY Stock Exchange
New York Stock Exchange
Wall Street History: Individual Investors & The Crash of 1929
The break-up of Standard Oil and other monopolies during the Trust-busting Era, created somewhat greater competition, but did not significantly impact Wall Street, or its major players. For example, after the success of the Justice Department in the 1911 Supreme Court Case United States v. Standard Oil (in which the Court ruled that Standard Oil of New Jersey violated the Sherman Antitrust Act), the company was ordered broken into 34 ostensibly independent companies. *
The stock in each of these companies was distributed to Standard Oil Company shareholders (principally the Rockefeller family) and each company had separate boards of directors and separate management, but by and large they continued to operate on separate floors of the same building — 26 Broadway in Manhattan. [Read more…] about Wall Street History: Individual Investors & The Crash of 1929
Wall Street History: Vanderbilt, Rockefeller, Gould, and Morgan
The period after the Civil War was one of significant economic and technological expansion in the nation and one in which corporations headquartered in Lower Manhattan and Wall Street would obtain a significant hegemony over the American economy.
This was a time in which individual entrepreneurs were running private businesses located on Wall Street. Men such as Cornelius Vanderbilt, Jay Gould, John D. Rockefeller and J.P. Morgan were major figures in the country and attained economic power and wealth on a scale previously unknown in United States history.
Much of their wealth was derived exploiting natural resources and technological innovations (notably steam engines, railroads, and oil). It was also largely dependent on the economy’s western expansion and African-American and immigrant labor. These men, who some call “Titans of Industry” and others “Robber Barons,” generally consolidated independent businesses into national enterprises, large monopolies, and multinational corporations. Many of these were headquartered in Lower Manhattan. [Read more…] about Wall Street History: Vanderbilt, Rockefeller, Gould, and Morgan
Wall St History: 19th Century Growth of Investment Banking
With the demise of the Philadelphia based Bank of the United States, the financial center of the country shifted to the privately owned state chartered financial firms on Wall Street.
As the nation recovered from the severe depression in the Panic of 1837, President James K. Polk’s policy of Manifest Destiny took root and significant westward settlement of Indigenous land expanded in the 1840s. Fortified by the Erie Canal and its Canal Fund, Wall Street financial institutions became strongly influenced by four factors: the invention of the telegraph; the development of railroads; the discovery of gold and other precious minerals in the West (particularly the California Gold Rush of 1849); and the arrival of significant numbers of Jewish and Irish immigrants in the city of New York. [Read more…] about Wall St History: 19th Century Growth of Investment Banking
A History of Wall Street: Tontine Coffee House & The Buttonwood Agreement
Many New Yorkers, and many Americans generally, consider Wall Street – to be the world’s most famous and important street. Many tourists are surprised to find that Wall Street, once described as “a short street with the river at one end and a Church at the other,” is only seven blocks long.
Originally named for a palisade wall built by the Dutch in the 1640s (and torn down by the English in 1699), the street was an important east-west thoroughfare until the American Revolution. At that time the entire city of New York, home to about 15,000 people, was south of City Hall Park.
One of the current ironies is that Wall Street today has returned to its residential roots. The financial institutions which became famous there now are located in midtown Manhattan or elsewhere. [Read more…] about A History of Wall Street: Tontine Coffee House & The Buttonwood Agreement
Charging Bull, Fearless Girl & Cultural Tourism In Lower Manhattan
On May 19th 2020, the Waterfront, Parks and Cultural Committee of Manhattan Community Planning Board No. 1, at a virtual meeting, rejected a proposal by the New York City Department of Transportation to move Arturo DiModica’s Charging Bull statue from its current location at Bowling Green to Broad Street in front of the New York Stock Exchange.
Although the matter of moving a sculpture from one City street to another a block away might not seem to be a matter of particular importance or great controversy, this issue did generate significant concern among residents of Lower Manhattan because of the nature of the work, the importance of the location and the people involved. [Read more…] about Charging Bull, Fearless Girl & Cultural Tourism In Lower Manhattan