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Name the Federal Reserve Banks


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West Coast is sparse--only FRB out here is in Frisco... surprising considering how new the system is in relative terms.


Actually, if you look at the population of the USA in 1900, you see that San Francisco was about all there was out there. Placement of the FRBs was not entirely by population. Minneapolis is good example. The choice of Kansas City, as the western gateway, was a similar decision.


20 Largest cities 1900-2005 at http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0922422.html


Realize that the men who planned this were born 1860-1870. That was their experiential world. They did not foresee and could not expect the explosive growth of Detroit and Los Angeles, for instance. Automobiles and motion pictures were novelties, not industries.


I visited the Fed in Cleveland after it was restored to 1912 luxury with leather, wool, oak, and mahogany. In the front, the pediments for the statues were also convertible into machine gun emplacements. They did not fear robbers so much as mobs of labor union anarchists. They expected class war.


Jack London's The Iron Heel written in 1907 is about class war (Wikipedia summary here) from a socialist perspective. That same year, Ernest Bramah wrote The Secret of the League (Wikipedia summary here.) about class war from the viewpoint of the wealthy, easily a precursor to Atlas Shrugged.


Just to say, 1900 was a far distant time and place.


And... just to close on topic.... I collected from circulated two sets of 12 notes in nominally uncirculated grade, A through L.

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Indeed, the Federal Reserve Districts are a fairly contentious and competitive function. I was reading about all the goings on of the competition betwixt Boston, New York and Atlanta over business in the Caribbean - notably Cuba and Puerto Rico. Until 1934, Cuba used US currency and large amounts of it had to be shipped to Havana. Of course proximity wise Atlanta thought they should get the tender, but then firms in New York and Boston were doing much more business there. In the end Atlanta won out, but their chairman was indicted later on improprieties.


San Francisco has Mr. Marotta has pointed out, served a huge area that was largely sparsely populated, ranging from Colorado to Hawaii, and Alaska. California up until WWII was one of the lesser populated states in the USA - WWII and the great migration for better climate and work changed all that, now California has the 8th largest economy in the world, and other states in District 12 have done well too, which has resulted in the most powerful district - something that was not foreseen in 1913 when the Federal Reserve was created.


BTW if you ever have a chance to visit the Federal Reserve Bank Museum there in SF it is well worth a visit, I went there when I was in high school and of course was glassy eyed at all the goodies they had. The best was getting to examine counterfeits.

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