Some would say New Orleans was built on cotton. In the mid-19th century, when one-third of all cotton produced in the USA was routed through New Orleans, the receiving docks on the levee were perpetually covered by tall stacks of cotton bales ready to be shipped out. The Cotton Exchange was founded in 1871 to regulate trade and prices. The building here, dating from the 1920s, is the third Cotton Exchange to occupy this site.