On May 17, 1792, 24 brokers gathered underneath a buttonwood tree outside of 68 Wall Street in New York City and signed an agreement to only trade with each other. The so-called Buttonwood Agreement was the start of the New York Stock and Exchange Board (now called the New York Stock Exchange). The allied brokers soon decided they needed a place where all they conduct their business, and by early 1793 they had built the Tontine Coffee House on the corner of West and Wall Streets. The coffee house quickly became one of the busiest centers in New York City for buying and selling stock, as well as playing host to auctions, dances, and even political rallies.
By 1817 The NYSEB had outgrown the coffee house and had to move to a bigger place. Although the Tontine itself went through a number of transformations, becoming a tavern in 1826 and a hotel in 1832, it is best remembered as the birthplace of the New York Stock Exchange.