Northern Liberty Market

We came across this photo from 1920 on Shorpy. The image shows Liberty Market at 5th and K St. NW.

The building was built on the east side of 5th and K in 1874 as the main competitor to Center Market and had 284 vending stalls. Sadly, there was a massive fire in 1946, which gutted the building. It was marginally rebuilt, but unrecognizable, and used (oddly) as a wax museum between 1966 and 1974.

The building was razed in 1985 and the lot is currently occupied by the City Vista condos (where you go to either Busboys and Poets, Taylor or Kushi).

Northern Liberty Market in 1920
Northern Liberty Market in 1920

Here’s another great photo, this time in color. We dug this up on the DC Public Library Commons Flickr feed.

Northern Liberty Market
Northern Liberty Market

About Tom

Tom founded Ghosts of DC on January 4th, 2012 as a blog to uncover the lost and untold history of Washington, D.C. He has lived in the city for over a decade and loves exploring every corner of the District.

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  • I went to the wax museum when I was little. I only have vague memories of the displays, and remember more a set of coin operated devices they had. One, you put your coin in and a panel slid up. A chicken came to the front, pecks at piano keys to “play” the piano, then food feel into a bowl for the chicken. Funny the things you remember. lol

  • Patricia Pugsley

    I vaguely remember going to the Wax Museum in the 70’s in elementary school. This is the coolest looking building! It’s just gorgeous.

  • Kent

    You can find out more about its history, and more historic photos, at the following Post