Financial History Issue 113 (Spring 2015) - Page 28

The Wall Street Ferry building appears nearly surrounded by a dense forest of ships’ masts in this 1865 photograph that supplies visual confirmation of Walt Whitman’s description of “mast-hemm’d Manhattan.” The clipper ship in the foreground is the Dreadnought, a three-masted medium clipper. The medium clippers were not quite as fast as the extreme clippers, but they were more practical because they could carry more cargo. The Dreadnought was wrecked off Tierra del Fuego on a voyage from Liverpool to San Francisco in 1869. The Astor House was a well-known hotel on Broadway at Vesey Street. It was designed by Isaiah Rogers, who was also the architect of the second Merchants’ Exchange, which today survives as the lower portion of 55 Wall Street. James Bogardus, the pioneer of cast iron architecture, was given the job of enclosing the building’s courtyard in 1852, which became known as the Rotunda. This photograph shows one of the circular lunch counters. King’s Handbook of New York City (1892) noted that this was “a much-frequented eating place for noon-day meals.” This 1915 photograph shows the Bank of New York Building at 48 Wall Street that was designed by Calvert Vaux. The building was completed in 1858, and a mansard roof was added in 1879. Vaux is best known today for his work with Frederick Law Olmsted in creating Central Park. A new building on the site, designed by Benjamin Wistar Morris, was completed in 1927 and now houses the Museum of American Finance. George B. Post’s design for the Cotton Exchange on Hanover Square was reminiscent of the architecture of the Chateau de Chambord in France’s Loire Valley. The building was completed in 1885