Jacob Lawrence and Gwendolyn Knight Hiram M. Chittenden Patsy Collins Gordon Hirabayashi Home William Boeing
Search Encyclopedia
Facebook
Advanced Search
Featured Eassy Sponsor of the Week Book Store Donate Now
Home About Us Contact Us Education Bookstore Tourism Advanced Search
6852 HistoryLink.org essays now available      
Donate Subscribe

Shortcuts

Libraries
Cyberpedias Cyberpedias
Timeline Essays Timeline Essays
People's Histories People's Histories

Selected Collections
Cities & Towns Cities & Towns
County Thumbnails Counties
Biographies Biographies
Interactive Cybertours Interactive Cybertours
Slide Shows Slideshows
Public Ports Public Ports
Audio & Video Audio & Video

Research Shortcuts

Map Searches
Alphabetical Search
Timeline Date Search
Topic Search

Features

Book of the Fortnight
Audio/Video Enhanced
History Bookshelf
Klondike Gold Rush Database
Duvall Newspaper Index
Wellington Scrapbook

More History

Washington FAQs
Washington Milestones
Honor Rolls
Columbia Basin
Everett
Olympia
Seattle
Spokane
Tacoma
Walla Walla
Roads & Rails

Cybertour Library

< Browse to Previous Essay | Browse to Next Essay >

Pike Place Market (Seattle) Cybertour

HistoryLink.org Essay 7053

Click here to start the tour

This is a photographic cybertour of Seattle's Pike Place Market. Also available as a printable walking tour (PDF format). Prepared by Walt Crowley and produced by Chris Goodman and Marie McCaffrey. Presented by the City of Seattle, Office of Economic Development, Tourism Division. Names of businesses are cited for orientation and information purposes only and do not imply recommendation or endorsement by the City of Seattle or by HistoryLink. Note: The Pike Place Market Cybertour was extensively updated in October 2012.

Introduction

Many consider the Pike Place Market to be the seat of Seattle's "soul." It is located between 1st and Western avenues and Pike and Virginia streets, and a short walk from downtown Seattle's retail and hotel district. The "Pike Street Hillclimb" connects it to the Seattle Aquarium and central waterfront via a system of stairs and elevators. Ample parking can be found along Western Avenue with elevator and skybridge connections to the Market.

History

On the morning of Saturday, August 17, 1907, hundreds of shoppers mobbed a few dozen farmers' carts at the foot of downtown's Pike Street (named for Seattle pioneer and builder John Pike). This first "public market" was held to cut out greedy middlemen who drove up the prices of local produce, and it was an instant hit with farmers and consumers alike.

Developer Frank Goodwin, who had recently returned with a small fortune from the Klondike Gold Rush, saw money in all those greens and began construction of the permanent arcades that make up the heart of today's market. The market prospered during the 1920s and 1930s, and was home to a lively mix of Japanese and Italian American farmers, struggling artists such as Mark Tobey, political radicals, and miscellaneous eccentrics.

Italian farmer Joe Desimone purchased the Market's main arcades in 1941 and guided it through World War II, when 1st Avenue's "Tenderloin" attracted thousands of sailors and soldiers along with ration-book bargain hunters. As suburbs and supermarkets sprouted after World War II, the Pike Place Market fell on bad times, while still supporting an eclectic community of artists and crafts people.

When the maze of aging buildings was slated for demolition in the 1960s, architect Victor Steinbrueck rallied Seattle to "Save the Market." Voters approved a 17-acre historic district on November 2, 1971, and the City of Seattle later established a Public Development Authority to rehabilitate and manage the Market's core buildings.

Click here to start the tour


< Browse to Previous Essay | Browse to Next Essay >

Related Topics: Seattle Neighborhoods | Agriculture |

Licensing: This essay is licensed under a Creative Commons license that encourages reproduction with attribution. Credit should be given to both HistoryLink.org and to the author, and sources must be included with any reproduction. Click the icon for more info. Please note that this Creative Commons license applies to text only, and not to images. For more information regarding individual photos or images, please contact the source noted in the image credit.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License


Major Support for HistoryLink.org Provided By: The State of Washington | Patsy Bullitt Collins | Paul G. Allen Family Foundation | Museum Of History & Industry | 4Culture (King County Lodging Tax Revenue) | City of Seattle | City of Bellevue | City of Tacoma | King County | The Peach Foundation | Microsoft Corporation, Other Public and Private Sponsors and Visitors Like You




Fish for sale, Pike Place Market, Seattle, 1999
HistoryLink.org Photo by Priscilla Long


Pike Place Market, Seattle
Courtesy MOHAI


Pike Place Market before renovations, 1960s
Courtesy Frank Shaw


Pike Place Market, 2001
HistoryLink.org Photo by Walt Crowley


Pike Place Market, 1970s
Postcard


Pike Place Market, 2001
HistoryLink.org Photo by Alan Stein


 
Home About Us Contact Us Education Bookstore Tourism Advanced Search

HistoryLink.org is the first online encyclopedia of local and state history created expressly for the Internet. (SM)
HistoryLink.org is a free public and educational resource produced by History Ink, a 501 (c) (3) tax-exempt corporation.
Contact us by phone at 206.447.8140, by mail at Historylink, 1411 4th Ave. Suite 803, Seattle WA 98101 or email admin@historylink.org