The First Neighborhood

 

By Alon Gibely Jex

Since 2005, when NY Living Solutions first opened its doors, we’ve been located in the Financial District. Not only did we get our start here, but so did New York City itself, when the first Dutch traders set up shop in this very same area in 1625. And through the years, the importance of this neighborhood has certainly not diminished.

In 1697, Trinity Church was erected to serve the needs of the growing Protestant community, and the church is still there, albeit in its more recent Gothic incarnation, built in 1846 where it still stands. In the church’s adjoining cemetery lies the remains of Robert Fulton, inventor of the steamboat and namesake for nearby Fulton street, Albert Gallatin, former US Treasurer and one of the founders of New York University, and Alexander Hamilton, former US Treasurer and revolutionary, who’s currently nearly as popular now as he was when he was alive thanks to the Broadway musical.

The revolutionary roots of New York City’s Financial District don’t end with Hamilton, Federal Hall, located on Wall Street, is where George Washington first took office as the first president of the newly formed United States of America, with New York City as its capital, and Federal Hall housing all branches of its newly formed government. Federal Hall still stands right there on Wall Street, as a museum, with a statue of George Washington in front in honor of the oath of presidency he took in 1789.

Just a few blocks from Federal Hall, on Pearl Street, sits Fraunces Tavern, New York City’s oldest building. This tavern was a flash point for the American Revolution and also the site where George Washington bid farewell to his troops. Fraunces Tavern is now a museum, but still an active bar as well!

Head up north to Beaver Street (so called because it was the site of an active pelt trading market for Dutch settlers) and you’ll run into the iconic Delmonico’s steak house. Started in the early 1800s, Delmonico’s has been serving prime cuts to the people of the Finanicial District for over two centuries.

Many of Delmonico’s most loyal customers are those who work in another iconic building, the home of the New York Stock Exchange. Although Wall Street (so named for the 12-foot wall that was built in 1697 to protect the Northern boundary of a Dutch Settlement situated there) is synonymous with the world of finance, and more specifically, the stock market, the actual home of the New York Stock Exchange is technically on Broad Street. And while the nearby bronze behemoth, the Charging Bull (also called the Wall Street Bull) has only been around since the late eighties, the building on Broad Street has been the home of the NYSE since 1903.

Yes the history of the Financial District is long and illustrious, and this post merely scratched the surface of the birthplace of New York City.  No longer just a center for finance, the Financial District is now home to thousands of people that call New York their home, including us at NY Living Solutions, who have been here for over a decade and can’t wait to see what the next ten years brings to this wonderful neighborhood.

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