There are many things I don't know, but economic history is close to the farthest edge of my solar system.
(In strict honesty, let me admit that I also didn't know that Louis Sherry sold more than chocolate and ice-cream, and those things circle my sun pretty closely.)
Luckily, Mary not only has a PhD in the topic, she is an impassioned and delightful storyteller. To paraphrase (and probably confabulate some details), it goes something like this:
The good news for the country's eventual financial stability is that this panic led pretty smartly to the foundation of the Federal Reserve System. And even I know that the Fed is the central bank that sets interest rates and money reserves and government securities.
A quick poke around the interwebs shows me that Louis Sherry's was one of the most exclusive restaurants in those halcyon New York years before the first World War. In the same stratum as Waldorf's and Delmonico's. There was even a very deluxe 5th Avenue building for the restaurant, designed by the Sanford White (he of Girl in a Red Velvet Swing and Ragtime fame).
After Prohibition and the rise of Bolshie waiters who just wouldn't do the work, these fabulous New York eateries faded or geared down. Louis Sherry himself turned back to his confectionary shop, which makes chocolates even now.
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