The Museum of American Finance is a relative newcomer to the world of New York City museums. The museum, located at 48 Wall St, has only been in existence since 1988. Originally called the Museum of American Financial History, it was first located in the US Customs House at Bowling Green, and then in the Standard Oil building at 26 Broadway. The museum got a new name and then a new home in 2008, when it was relocated to the former headquarters of the Bank of New York.
TIP: There is a way to see the museum for free (read on). For more tips on saving money when visiting New York City, check out our blog tag for New York on a budget. You can also check out Goldstar which often has 50% tickets.
Be sure to check out our blog post on other things to do in Lower Manhattan.
Whether you have an MBA or you are completely befuddled by the US financial system, the Museum of American Finance has something for you! The museum aims to not only preserve the history of the country’s financial system, but to educate the public about both that history and our present financial system. Permanent exhibits include an exhibit about Alexander Hamilton, the first Secretary of the Treasury of the United States and a Founding Father of this country. The museum also boasts a collection of over 10,000 artifacts relating to finance, including old stocks, bonds and bank notes.
A Bit More About The Building…
The museum is housed in the former headquarters of the Bank of New York, the oldest bank in the United States (est. 1784). Bank of New York was founded by Alexander Hamilton himself, and was the first corporate stock to be traded at the New York Stock Exchange. The current building opened in 1929, and the Bank of New York remained at this location until the 1990s. The Museum of American Finance now occupies three floors of this historic building.
Days Open: Tuesday-Saturday
Note: The museum is closed for national holidays and stock market holidays
How to Get to The Museum of American Finance:
The nearest subway stations are:
2-3 Train: Wall St. Station
J Train: Broad St. Station
R-W Train: Rector Street Station
1 Train: Rector Street Station
A Few Things to Know…
In addition to the permanent collections, the museum offers temporary exhibitions. At the time of writing (January 2014), the exhibition is “The Fed at 100,” an exhibit exploring the history and role of the Federal Reserve Bank, which is celebrating its centennial.
The museum offers a variety of special events and hosts many guest speakers. Check out what is coming up at their website; www.moaf.org to see what is offered during your visit!
Large bags and packages are not allowed inside. Leave the big shopping bags at the hotel!
Make A Day Of It!!
For a full day in the Financial District, you could visit the Museum of American Finance and take one of our Lower Manhattan Tours! (See our calendar for dates/times.)
Written by Katherine Weatherford