The Georgetown Market is a historic market house in the Georgetown area of Washington, DC. Built in 1865, the market was built into a pre-existing market structure dating back to 1795. On May 6th of 1971, it was added to the National Register of Historic Places. The market underwent renovations in recent years, and it currently hosts a number of businesses.
In 1795, Washington, DC’s first recorded public market
opened for business. Previously, the property had been a butcher’s market,
which had at some point been replaced by a debtor’s jail. The jail was moved in
1795, however, in order to make way for the frame of what was to be a frame
market house. The frame market did not remain long in the town, however, as the
town experienced a surge in growth and required a more substantial market. As a
result, the market was torn down in 1796 and replaced with a much larger
marketplace. Over the years, the market was expanded several times over in
accordance with the continued growth of Georgetown, but as the American Civil War
raged on, the market was damaged numerous times. By the time the war had ended,
the market seemed to be beyond repair, and the town tore what remained down. In
1865, a new market was built, and it still remains in Georgetown today.
The Georgetown Corporation owned and operated the market
following its construction, but in 1871, Georgetown was incorporated into the
District of Columbia. As a result of the incorporation, DC’s government began
regulation of the market. DC government leased out the building to multiple
businesses in the following years beginning in 1935, but in 1966, Congress ordered
the District Government to begin a preservation effort for the building and
re-convert it into a public market. It was not until May 6th of 1971
that the Georgetown Market was actually added to the National Register of
Historic Places, however. As per the orders of Congress, the Georgetown Market
building currently serves as a market for the Georgetown neighborhood area.