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MARK AUSTIN THOMAS: Time to open up the Marketplace Vault for a look This Week in the History of Business. Today a spot very close to our hearts here at Marketplace:


STACEY VANEK-SMITH: The floor of the New York Stock Exchange might sound like this now, but it wasn't always so action-packed.

The exchange was born in 1792. That's when 24 stock-brokers got together under a Buttonwood tree on Wall Street and formed a trading organization.

At first, the Big Board rented a room in lower Manhattan for $200 a month, but as the volume of stocks increased, the brokers needed a bigger place to do business.

So, this week back in 1865, the NYSE moved to Broad Street, where it remains today.

There have, of course, been upgrades. Around the turn of the century, a design contest was held for a new building.

Architect George Post won with his neoclassical design. When it was finished, the trading floor was one of the largest spaces in the city — and probably one of the noisiest.

I'm Stacey Vanek-Smith.

About the author

Stacey Vanek Smith is a senior reporter for Marketplace, where she covers banking, consumer finance, housing and advertising.

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