Streets of New York: Wall Street

Wall Street

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Wall Street 40.706001, -74.008801

By Sarah Kim, Amy Mei, Yulin Ren (Section 08)

Everyone has heard of the famous streets of New York such as Wall Street, Broadway, Maiden Lane, Love Lane, and many more popular streets. However, not everyone knows where these street names originated from. Most of the street names of New York, and even the borough names such as Manhattan were actually named after Dutch influences! With New York being such a popular tourist spot, it is interesting to learn of the Dutch impacts on such big cities and streets.


Our chosen Dutch “artifact” can be found throughout the streets of New York City, scattered in various corners, dominating the identity of the avenues and streets of this urban city; street names and street signs around the Big Apple bear many Dutch influences.  Perhaps the most famous Dutch influenced street name is the world-renowned, Wall Street.  The original Dutch name was “de Waal Straat” which was directly translated to “Wall Street.”   In the 17th century, the wall created the northern boundary of the New Amsterdam settlement that was established with defensive intentions.  The name directly refers to a wall that was build by Dutch settlers on the southern tip of Manhattan Island; there was a war between the English and Dutch, which potentially could have expanded into the island’s American colonies.  The wall was never actually used for defense, but its legacy still holds strong, as Wall Street is now a figurative bastion of the world’s financial market and economy.  Wall Street is a 1.1 kilometer stretch of sidewalk that extends across eight blocks from Broadway to South Street, making it a monumental landmark in the heart of the city.

We chose to research Wall Street, because we’re all pursuing business for our bachelor’s degree at Rutgers University.  New York is such a popular and beautiful city which attracts millions of tourists and it was very interesting to learn how much the Dutch influenced this city.  But most importantly, we’re most invested in NYC, because many of us dream of working in the city one day, specifically on Wall Street, to fully immerse ourselves in the heart of business.  Wall Street is still an emblem of power, status, and authority in modern day society, so people still treat it with the same respect it was founded on.


Works Cited

“Dutch Art.” Google Books. Web. 10 Apr. 2016.

“History of Wall Street.” (Business Reference Services, Library of Congress). Web. 10 Apr. 2016.

“NYC Street Names and Their Stories.” Web. 10 Apr. 2016.

“Wall Street & Stock Market History.” History of Wall Street and the Stock Markets. Web. 10 Apr. 2016.

“Where Does the Name “Wall Street” Come From? | Investopedia.” Investopedia. 2004. Web. 10 Apr. 2016.

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