Henny Ray Abrams  /  AP
A statue of George Washington on the steps of Federal Hall overlooks the New York Stock Exchange at the intersection of Wall and Broad streets in downtown Manhattan. On Monday, in a nod to its historical and architectural importance, the 36-block area of the Wall Street Historic District was officially designated on the National Register of Historic Places.
updated 3/5/2007 2:08:47 PM ET 2007-03-05T19:08:47

NEW YORK — With a convergence of money, power and history, there's no other area of Manhattan quite like Wall Street.

Home to the city's early Dutch settlers, the Wall Street area of lower Manhattan has proved to be an economic engine for the country. On Monday, in a nod to its historical and architectural importance, the 36-block area of the Wall Street Historic District was officially joining the National Register of Historic Places.

Monday's ceremony was set for the Federal Hall National Memorial, itself an important example of the district's legacy. The building was constructed from 1833 to 1842 in high-style Greek Revival architecture at the site of George Washington's 1789 inauguration.

More renovations?
"It's possible that no single area tells the story of America's progression from a primarily rural nation to a diverse industrial society as well as the Wall Street Historic District," said Steven McClain, the president of the National Architectural Trust.

Being listed on the National Register doesn't create mandatory restrictions on building owners and it opens the door for landlords to apply for lucrative federal tax breaks to renovate their properties.

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