FREE Downloadable Pike Place Market Book

Explore Pike Place Market's History -- 115 Years and Counting!

Download Our Free Digital Book


Did you know Pike Place Market is one of the most studied public markets in the world?

The Pike Place Market Preservation and Development Authority has put together a free digital book sharing stories from the Market’s rich 114-year history and illustrating its continued contributions to our region’s culture.

Inside Pike Place Market is a visually rich, interactive digital book that explores, explains, and celebrates the Market’s unique characteristics and history. From the urban design, the role of citizen activism, our Market Family, the principles embedded in the foundation of the Market, and more!

This book includes hundreds of photos, videos, maps, and documents of the Market’s past and present, and it is designed to be a FREE resource for historians, educators, students, and anyone interested in the history, function, and politics of public markets and, in particular, Pike Place Market! View the full chapter descriptions below.

Members of the community in the Seattle area and worldwide are encouraged to download this book and incorporate it into educational efforts that explore Pike Place Market.

Individuals, schools, universities, libraries, museums, non-profit institutions, and historical societies are invited to use this book under the terms of educational fair use, with the provision that no profits are realized from the use of this publication. Other uses require permission from the Pike Place Market PDA. Credit for any use must be given to the Pike Place Market PDA.

How to Download

iPhone, iPad & Mac

1. Find the book on Apple Books

2. Download to the Books app on your iPhone, iPad or Mac OS desktop or laptop.

3. Open in the Books app to read



Android Phones

1. Find the book in the Play Store

2. Search “Inside Pike Place Market” under the book tab, or tap the button below to download this free book to your Android phone.

Note: Interactive features like video, audio, enhanced navigation, galleries and some images are not available on the Google Play version.



PC Users (PDF Version)

Click or tap the button below to read the PDF version of our free digital book Inside Pike Place Market.

Note: Interactive features like video, audio, enhanced navigation, galleries and some images are not available in the PDF version.



inside pike place market

Book Outline

The Birth of the Market – The Market’s founding values and operations provided a strong framework for how it has continued to thrive in the decades that have followed.

Urban Design – The Market is a public space that grew organically within the existing urban environment. It has been the focus of historic preservation and a shining example of adaptation to growth and change over time.

Citizen Activism – Since the Market’s inception, people from all walks of life have worked together to establish the Market and defend it from efforts to develop it into something larger. Today, it is an award-winning example of public/private partnership, community engagement and collective process.

Market Management Today – The Market continues to be a unique community leader, not only drawing people to King County from around the world, but also actively providing support to some of our community’s most vulnerable and marginalized members through a strong collection of social services. This chapter gives readers a detailed view into what it takes to manage, preserve and develop the Market today.

The Diverse Market Family – The Market has been, and continues to be, a mirror of what is happening across our county, reflecting immigration patterns and immigrant communities’ contributions to our region’s economy. First-person narratives from the historical record and contemporary interviews represent various cultural groups who have found social and economic success at Pike Place Market.

21st-Century Growth – The Market completed a new plaza and mixed-use facility (with retail and low-income housing), realizing a 40-year vision to return market functionality and charter components to an underutilized site within the Market Historic District. The plaza will connect the Market to the central waterfront, which is at the beginning of a period of dramatic change. The Market continues to evolve and grow to keep the citizens of Seattle engaged in the future of their historic public market.

Epilogue: The Market’s Resilience  In 2021, the Market has just emerged from one of its hardest challenges to date – the COVID-19 pandemic. The Market has been able to stay open throughout the entire pandemic thanks to the support of our locals, efforts by Market organizations, and the incredible merchants who make up this vibrant community. Stay tuned for more in the future on this story of the enduring resilience of Pike Place Market.