Monday, September 10, 2018

Eastern Market - Deep Family Roots

My love of markets runs deep in my family roots.  During the depths of the depression, my grandparents (paternal grandparents) were renting an old farm house from a bank in a northern suburb of Detroit.  The banker came by and said, if you can come up with $200 for a downpayment, your mortgage payments will be less than what you are paying in rent, and the house comes with five-acres of land and the store buildings down the side.  They literally pawned the family silverware to raise the down payment.  My grandfather was lucky, he worked at Ford and was well respected, even in the slowest of times he worked 2 or 3 days a week.  

My grandfather being a hard working farm-boy, planted a huge garden, and started selling produce on the Eastern Market in Detroit.  He made enough the first summer to retrieve the silverware.  From that point in the early 1930's until sometime in the late 1950's early 1960's, the family sold honey and produce on the market.  During World War II, my grandfather bought an 80 acre farm in the middle of nowhere - the farm I grew up on.  

Until my latest visit to Detroit, I had never been to the Eastern Market.  In the late 1960's the area was in the middle of the race-riots in the city.  My parents feared the area and never took me to see it.  I decided I needed to experience this connection.  

It is a great market, alive, full of people, and great things from the good earth.  It is retail and wholesale and very vibrant.  Nothing to fear, except trying to find a parking space (fear not, there is a lot of parking, drive around the outside of the market and you will find a spot.)  


  1. I love these markets. And this one has such a personal story. Your grandparents were very fortunate and very industrious in those hard times.

  2. for a minute there, I thought you were showing pix of eastern market in DC.