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The birth of our nation and the history of Wall Street tie closely together.
In 1609, Henry Hudson founded a colony called New Amsterdam at the mouth of the Hudson River. As the American colonies grew, New Amsterdam became an important hub of New World commerce.
To protect itself from outside attack, colonists built a 12-foot-high walled stockade at the south end of New Amsterdam in 1655. It was here, close to the harbor and sheltered by the wall, that merchants congregated to conduct business nearly 350 years ago.
That marketplace beside the wall became known as Wall Street, and those merchants -- whose prosperity grew as the colonies expanded -- became the …