“A typical fruit and vegetable stand in Center Market, Washington, DC”

By W. Pack, February 18, 1915

Throughout the 18th and 19th centuries, workers at public markets stocked merchandise and haggled over price with customers. These markets were run by municipalities and provided shoppers with a variety of goods at a central location. By the time this photograph was taken, public markets were already facing stiff competition from retail grocery stores and commercial wholesale markets.

National Archives, Records of the Bureau of Agricultural Economics (83-G-21)