The charging bull story of New York is one that certainly deserves to be told again and again. Most New Yorkers still remember that fateful night as if it happened just yesterday. Arturo Di Modica and his crew jumped out of their flatbed truck that had stopped right in front of the New York Stock Exchange about 10 nights before Christmas, right after the night watchman had completed his Wall Street patrol. Di Monica and his team were well aware that they had just four and a half minutes before he returned.
They immediately set about lowering the bronze bull in the middle of Broad Street, right below the New York Stock Exchange Christmas Tree and the truck immediately zoomed out of sight. It might have been 25 years since the Italian artist spent almost $350,000 to gift NYC with one of its most famous artifacts, but the charging bull of New York still manages to capture all sorts of reactions from New Yorkers – pedestrians, traders, cabbies, tourists as well as vendors.
The bull might seem to be menacing, with its nostrils flared and its body ready to charge after anything in its path, but Di Modica believed that the bull was a symbol of the city’s optimism, drive and willingness to move towards the future, irrespective of the odds against it and irrespective of what lay ahead.
Di Modica revealed that after unloading the bull, he had stayed behind to capture the reactions of the people passing by. He found out that people fell in love with the sculpture right away. People wanted to embrace it and touch it. Di Modica later confessed how he stood close by, watching the first reactions of people until noon before he finally decided to take a break for lunch.
However, every one wasn’t nearly as happy to see this NYC icon. Executives at the Stock Exchange were clearly upset, perhaps thinking the bull to be a kind of Trojan Horse. And even though there were no soldiers inside, people didn’t want to take their chances. As a result, the police were called and when it was determined that they were ill-equipped to run the charging bull out of town, private contractors were hired to haul the bull off to the Queens.
Di Modica once again bailed the bull from the boroughs and managed to find it a new home in Bowling Green, a few blocks away from the New York Stock Exchange. The role played by certain community activists and the Parks Department in finding the bull a new home was quite commendable as well. It is here that the charging bull has been residing for the past 25 years, glaring and flaring at anyone who decides to come into its path and entertaining travelers from all over the world.
It is believed that the charging bull has also helped New York become more bullish. Ever since it first began its job of protecting the city, New York has seen a drop in crime, a rise in real-estate prices and a reversal in the city’s fortunes. The bull has also managed to stay strong through depressions, terrorist attacks as well as countless protests.
Today, the charging bull of New York is as popular an icon as the great Statue of Liberty and whenever the market crashes, people come to the bull and ask it to stop resting and come back to work. The wolf might have never made it to Wall Street, but the bull still continues to charge on.