Thursday, September 13, 2007

North of Wall Street, There Be Dragons

Although Wall Street got its name from the Walloons, a group of French-speaking settlers in early New Amsterdam, the street actually was laid out in 1685 along the fortified wall which capped the north side of 17th Century Manhattan.

This stunning overlay on Yahoo Maps – combining a map of the city in 1660 with a modern map – shows exactly how much the tip of Manhattan has grown in the last 400 years.

Note that Pearl Street, nearly a quarter mile from the water today, was Manhattan's original eastern shoreline. Broad Street's original canal is also visible, as is the original battery standing guard over New York Harbor.

(Hat tip to Gothamist.)

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