Los Angeles' Wall Street is just like its Main Street (in fact, Main Street runs parallel a block away). Here focus is on local economies that are characteristically distinct from one city block to the next.
The route along Los Angeles' Wall Street took the walkers past residences, businesses, street vendors, and street-side parties; districts including warehouses, textile factories, single family bungalows, apartments, and Art Deco shopping clusters. Contrast this with Wall Street in New York:
These pictures were taken just after the Occupy Wall Street encampment at Zuccotti Park. As you can see, barricades dominate. Though the same pedestrian blocades exist even now around the "critical" center of American banking.
Everett's Wall Street starts among downtown bank and government buildings and ends down at the docks, site of working class race riots in 1907. Here, white workers violently removed East Indian immigrants from lumber mills where they shared employment. Riots were prevalent up and down the Washington coast during this time.
Some Wall Streets are named after a physical wall nearby (such as New York City's Wall Street, where the Dutch had set up a protective wall), other times they are named in honor of the original (in New York) as a town's center for banking (such as Los Angeles'). Still others are part of housing developments where provenance is ambiguous, such as this Wall Street in Carson, California, south of Los Angeles:
Carson, California's Wall Street is part of a residential neighborhood in visible range of the StubHub Center, home to soccer's Los Angeles Galaxy. The area, which also contains Cal State University Dominquez Hills, was one of the sites considered for the new LA-area football stadium (which ended up going to Inglewood).
Back in Washington State, in the other side of the state known as the Palouse, there are a few counties named after American homesteaders. One is Whitman County, named after a missionary, who came across the Oregon trail then set up his settlement inside an existing Native Cayuse settlement. Hundreds of Cayuse subsequently died of measles. The tribe then turned around and killed the Whitman family whom they held responsible for the epidemic.
None of the history of Marcus Whitmen, the Cayuse tribe, or the measles epidemic is represented along the Wall Street in Colfax, seat of Whitman County. However, just a few blocks south sits another disasterous blend of American-Native cultures: The Codger Pole, a totem pole featuring the participants in a 1988 football game.
Saint Paul, Minnesota's Wall Street is more conventional, existing in its busy downtown along the Mississippi River. While Wall Street here contains a number of live-work lofts and other redeveloped old warehouses, the bank buildings that originated in the early 1900s exist a couple blocks to the West, on Jackson Street.
Why the developers chose Jackson over Wall is still a mystery to this author (despite visiting the Minnesota Historical Society's library), but now there is little room for more banks on the latter; Wall Street is chopped off at its northern end by the I-94 freeway.
In a city with lots of money moving through it, one might expect to find a prominent Wall Street modelled after the original in New York. However, Las Vegas' Wall Street is less than a block long (another example of a chopped off street) and there are no banks in sight, but easily viewable is the tower of Stratosphere Las Vegas. Stretching upwards from the north end of the Las Vegas Strip, the attraction entered bankruptcy right after its opening in 1996.
Wall Street in Las Vegas is an outlyer—it exists out on its own beyond the Strip, near a freeway overpass and surrounded by more heavily trafficked roads, and contains no permanent buildings. Oddly, when one approaches Wall Street from the I-15 South off-ramp there is a sign making sure to point road traffic in its direction. However, neither of the other roads mentioned on the sign as accessible via Wall Street, Western and Frontage, are actually accessible in such a way.
America's first financial center. More soon....