What Is Curb Exchange?

Curb Exchange is a self-guided audio- and print walking tour of the Wall Street financial district in New York City. Through a series of short walks and an accompanying print newspaper, the tour uncovers forgotten or lost stories from Wall Street’s past that may provide some clues to what happened in our most recent financial meltdown.


Inspired by the 2008 stock market crash, New York City history and experimental mobile narrative forms, I designed the Curb Exchange walking tour as a way to explore how Wall Street’s past–told through the stories from its streets–can help answer the question on all our minds after the 2008 global financial crisis: why?

How It Works

The Curb Exchange walking tour is made up of 8 audio tracks, approximately an hour in length, and the Curb Exchange print newspaper, an 8-page publication especially designed for the tour. To begin, download the materials from this website, load onto your mobile music player, and start at the newsstand in front of 40 Wall Street, between Broad and William Streets. (In October 2010, you will receive a copy of the print newspaper and an accompanying map insert when you meet up at the newsstand.) When you play Track 1 of the audio mp3s at the newsstand, you will hear the voice of Bob, the fictional narrator and local newsstand owner, who will guide you throughout the tour.

In each of the following audio tracks, Bob will lead you on 10-minute mini-tours through different streets and landmarks in the Wall Street financial district. Each mini-tour is set during a different era of American history: the Post-Revolutionary War Era (1790s), the Gilded Age (1860s-1890), the Progressive Era (1890-1920), the Twenties (1920s), the Great Depression (1929-1940s) and the Reagan Era (1980s-2008).

In each walk, Bob will guide you to former and current landmarks in the neighborhood, including the New York Stock Exchange, Federal Hall and Trinity Church, to hear his biting commentary and dramatic reenactments of the stories that occurred at those sites during that time period. During these walks, you can also browse through the Curb Exchange newspaper, featuring archival photographs and excerpted news articles, to read about the same stories you’re listening to.

Curb Exchange was written and directed by A.E. Souzis and produced by Joel Hamburger at GödelString Studio in Brooklyn.

A.E. Souzis is a writer and media artist living in New York City. Through her writings, multimedia installations and site-specific tours, she creates narratives that explore the real-life networks of power that exist in current events and politics, underground and alternative histories and public space. Her work has been exhibited at the New School and Hunter College’s Black Box Gallery, and she has published writing in the book anthology Traveler’s Tales: Prague and various online publications, including the art/culture journal /seconds. She has a BA in English Literature and Creative Writing from Oberlin College and an MFA in Integrated Media Art from Hunter College. Visit her website or contact her here.

Joel Hamburger is a composer/sound designer/producer based in Brooklyn, New York. He is the owner and principal of GödelString, a full service music production facility.

What is Curb Exchange?
Curb Exchange is an audio and print walking tour of Wall Street created by A.E. Souzis.