York Town Square

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York Market House No. 3 – The first Eastern Market

In 1889, the Eastern Market walls took a tumble.
With it came near disaster, as described in this excerpt from “Never to be Forgotten”:
A little boy and his dog play in the Eastern Market yard. The dog runs toward the building, and his young companion starts to follow when the walls fall… .

The falling bricks bury the dog, but the boy is safe. The market is in shambles, fewer than three years after it opened. A high wind, called a cyclone, caused the destruction. Witnesses see the wind twist off the cupola, or ventilator, on top of the building. The roof and walls of the weakened structure fell to earth seconds later, according to witnesses, “with a roar like a clap of thunder.” A newspaper reported: “…(T)he pride of East York was destroyed, the work of her enterprise, an adornment to her section and a positive good, swayed beneath an overpowering element.”
Workers rebuilt the market, and it served east-end farmers for decades. The New Eastern Market, following development at Caterpillar and Haines Acres in Springettsbury Township, grew from its predecessor in 1955.
In the 1990s, the York County Heritage Trust operated an agricultural museum in the old market house. Today, York’s market house No. 3 rests in private hands, not in use for market purposes.
It’s overshadowed by its suburban successor and a used car lot-repair shop that mostly shields it from West Market Street. What is this about these old market houses and auto garages? The same thing happened to the York City Market. Another sign of the times in the battle between industrialism over agrarianism.
A sampling of other York market posts:
York County farm vs. factory tension relieved in overnight raid .
Going to market a longtime York County pastime.
York’s Central Market sells steak … and sizzle.
The forgotten fifth York market house.
York Market House No. 1 – Penn Street Farmers Market.
York Market House No. 2 – The architecturally striking City Market.
York Market House No. 3 – The first Eastern Market.
Market House No. 4 – Central Market, York’s most popular.
York Market House No. 5 – Carlisle Avenue Market, revisited.