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Current Information/Points of Interest

Charging Bull

The Charging Bull (also known as the Wall Street Bull or the Bowling Green bull) is a symbol of aggressive financial optimism and prosperity. The Charging Bull was created by Di Modica following the 1987 stock market crash as a symbol of the “strength and power of the American people.” The Bull was not the city’s idea; it was the artist’s idea and was considered an act of “guerrilla art.” In December 15, 1989 the Charging Bull was installed beneath a 60-foot Christmas tree in the middle of Broad Street in front of the New York Stock Exchange. However, the police detained the sculpture and had placed it into an impound lot. This led to an upset public, which caused the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation to place it in the plaza at Bowling Green.

The Charging Bull is a known tourist destination in the Financial District. Several visitors are always seen having their photos taken with the bull.

Bowling Green

Bowling Green is a small public park in Lower Manhattan. It is the oldest public park in New York City and also the location of the Charging Bull sculpture. It marks the origin point for the ticker-tape parades. The Bowling Green Fence and Park is listed on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.

The front entrance of the U.S. Custom House bounds the south end of the park. A portion of the park is a grassy area that is fenced in. This area has tables and chairs that are popular lunchtime destinations for local workers in the nearby Financial District. There is also a fountain and pool. Sometimes, there are official food stands in the area once or twice a week, as well as many unofficial vendors.

Demographics – Past and Present

Lower Manhattan circumscribes several neighborhoods, all located below the lateral barrier of Houston Street. The 2000 Census includes information on Lower Manhattan as a region incorporating areas such as Tribecca, Chinatown, Greenwich Village and Little Italy.

Within the decade of 1990 to 2000, the population of Lower Manhattan increased by 8 percent, from 144,334 to 155,962 people. This equaled almost nearly three times the overall Manhattan growth rate during that time. Lower Manhattan’s current population increase has been concentrated in Battery Park City (located on the southwestern tip of Lower Manhattan) and Chinatown (located in the central section of Lower Manhattan).

In the year 2000, approximately 10 percent of Manhattan’s total population of 1,537,195 lived in Lower Manhattan. Asians were the largest racial group in Lower Manhattan, followed by non-Hispanic whites (32 percent, or 49,288people), then Hispanics (19 percent, or 29,247 people), and blacks (6 percent, or 8,704 people). Manhattan, overall, consisted of non-Hispanic whites (46 percent), Hispanics (27 percent), blacks (15 percent) and Asians (9 percent).

45 percent, or 29,843 people, of Lower Manhattan’s immigrants arrived in the United States in the last 10 years.

Historical Information

Wall Street

Wall street is located in Lower Manhattan. It runs east from Broadway to South Street on the East River. Wall Street runs right through the historical center of the Financial District. Wall Street is home to multiple U.S. stock and other exchanges such as the NYSE, NASDAQ, AMEX, NYMEX, and NYBOT.

In the early 17th century, the only thing that denoted plots and residences in the New Amsterdam settlement, which was bordered by Wall Street, were basic picket and plank fences. However, later, Peter Stuyvesant, on behalf of the Dutch, led the construction of a stronger defensive wall. This wall was 12-feet high, which helped to protect against attacks from the various Native American tribes. The British colonial government in 1699 then later took down this wall.

The Manhattan Financial District is one of the largest business districts in the United States. In 1914, 23 Wall Street, also known as the “House of Morgan” was created and stood as the bank’s headquarters, which was the most important address in American finance for decades. During the Great Depression, development of the financial district festered. However, the construction of the World Trade Center was undertaken during middle and end of the 20th century in hopes to spur economic development downtown. However, it was not originally as successful as planned. While the main idea behind the creation of the towers was to house all the tools necessary for international trade, much of the remained vacant. However, eventually many large and powerful firms began to purchase space in the World Trade Center. It also attracted other powerful business to the immediate neighborhood.

The loss of the World Trade Center contributed to an immediate loss of business on Wall Street; however, eventually it spurred development in the Financial District. This is due to tax incentives provided by the federal, state and local governments to encourage development.

The New York Stock Exchange

The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) is located at 11 Wall Street in lower Manhattan. It is the world’s largest stock exchange by market capitalization. The New York Stock Exchange is used as a means for buyers and sellers to trade shares of stock in companies registered for public trading.

The origin of the NYSE can be traced to May 17, 1792 when 24 stockbrokers outside of 68 Wall Street signed the Buttonwood Agreement. On March 8, 1817, the organization drafted a constitution and renamed itself the New York Stock and Exchange Board. Anthony Stockholm was elected the Exchange’s first president. In 1863, the New York Stock and Exchange Board changed to its current name, the New York Stock Exchange.

The Exchange was closed shortly after World War 1 began, but was partially re-opened on November 28, 1914 in order to help the war efforts by trading bonds. It was completely reopened for stock trading in mid-December. On October 31, 1938, during the Great Depression, the Exchange disclosed a fifteen-point program aimed to upgrade protection for the investing public, in an effort to restore investor confidence.

Federal Hall

Federal Hall was built in 1700 as New York’s City Hall. It later served as the first capitol building of the United States of America. Federal Hall was the site of George Washington’s 1789 inauguration as the first President of the United States. It was also where the United States Bill of Rights was ratified. The building was then demolished in 1812, and the New York Customs House replaced it in 1842. Currently, it is known as the Federal Hall National Museum. Many of the most important legislative actions in the United States occurred with the 1st Congress at Federal Hall. In addition to the Bill of Rights, the Judiciary Act of 1789 was also enacted in the building, which led to the set up of the United States federal court system.

U.S. Custom House

The Alexander Hamilton U.S. Custom House was built between 1902-1907 by the federal government to house the duty collection operations for the port of New York. It is located next to Battery Park at 1 Bowling Green. Today, the building is known as the New York branch of the National Museum of the American Indian. The museum occupies two floors in the U.S. Custom House. The Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District is also housed in the building.

Castle Clinton

Castle Clinton, also known as Fort Clinton, was once a circular sandstone fort now located in Battery Park. Over time, Castle Clinton has been used for various situations such as a beer garden, an exhibition hall, a theater, the first immigration station, a popular aquarium, and finally a national monument.

Fort Clinton was originally created in 1811 to complement Castle Williams on Governors Island to defend New York City from British forces. However, it never saw an action in the War of 1812, or any other war. The US Army stopped using the fort in 1821 and it was leased to New York City as a place of public entertainment.

In 1855 Castle Clinton became the Emigrant Landing Depot, the New York State immigrant processing facility until 1890. After 1890, the Federal Government took control of immigration processing and opened Ellis Island. About over 8 million immigrants were processed through Castle Clinton.


"The Immigrants" Dedicated to the people of all nations who entered America through Castle Clinton. In memory of Samuel Rudin

Castle Clinton was designated a national monument on August 12, 1946. Today it is administrated by the National Park Service and is a departure point for visitors to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island.

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