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A one-of-a-kind photo book that takes you inside of the oldest continuously operating open air street market in the US.

           PLEASE SUPPORT THE PHOTO-BOOK PROJECT

                FOR PHILLY'S HISTORIC ITALIAN MARKET

We are asking for your support of this Kickstarter Project to complete the printing of the Italian Market Photo Book, titled "Philadelphia's Historic Italian Market; A Stroll Through The Heart Of South Philadelphia".   The sale of this approximately 100-page photo book, by the United Merchants of the South 9th Street Businessmen's Association will help raise funds to maintain and preserve Philly's Historic Italian Market. 

The planning step for the photo book is done. The photography step for the photo book is done.  Even the graphic design of the entire photo book is done.  However, with all this work having been completed, over the last three years, we're now stopped in our tracks at the book printing step and we need your help.

We now need funding for the printing of the final photo books. These are intended to be 8x10 inch softcover books, but on a paper stock that will make the photography “pop”.  We want to print 2000 copies of the approximately 100-page photo book. 

We have a $9600 goal that we're trying to reach for this Kickstarter Project with your generous donations.  If we exceed our stated funding goal, we will print more photo books, again which will be for sale by the United Merchants of the South 9th Street Businessmen's Association to support maintenance and preservation projects for the Italian Market.  But the reward for most donations is your own signed copy of this unique and artistic photo book.

Read more about Philly’s Italian Market below and please enjoy some of the photos from the new book. 

Italian Market Photo Book Cover
Italian Market Photo Book Cover

The 9th Street Italian Market, located in South Philly (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA), is often referred to as Philadelphia’s Italian Market because its historical beginnings in the early 1900's involved a rich cultural mix of primarily Italian shops and street market stalls.

Business is conducted in the Italian Market essentially as it has been for nearly 100 years. Philly’s Italian Market is the oldest continuously operating open-air market in the USA. And no one wants to change any part of this Market for another 100 years.

Vegetabe Vendor Weighing A Purchase
Vegetabe Vendor Weighing A Purchase
Street Vendor at A Traditional Stall
Street Vendor at A Traditional Stall
Purchases are weighed on Traditional Scales
Purchases are weighed on Traditional Scales
Early Morning Setup in the Market
Early Morning Setup in the Market

When we first thought about the Italian Market photo book project, we wanted to capture the character (and characters) of the place and the people. We wanted to tell the story of the Market, to let the reader see and "feel" the Market.

But it is difficult for the sights and sounds and smells of the Market to be truly and accurately presented in two-dimensional photographs. However, between the images and their captions in this book the reader can truly feel like they're in the Market and better understand how the 100-year history of the Market continues today…and should continue for many tomorrows.

A Busy Day at the Market
A Busy Day at the Market
A Local at One of the Market Coffee Houses
A Local at One of the Market Coffee Houses

There is a rhythm to the Market, a flow of energy that we tried to capture in the photographs.  It’s this energy that a new person to the Market sees, hears and feels when they walk along South 9th Street.

The market is multifaceted, on one hand a tourist attraction and on the other a functional commercial business for the neighborhood.  And the customers in the market range from tourists, possibly from faraway lands, to the local neighbor stopping for things to make for dinner that evening.   And each person in the Market, in their own way, contributes to the energy that defines and describes Philly’s Italian Market.

Trash Can Fires are a Market Tradition.
Trash Can Fires are a Market Tradition.
The Market is Open 365 Days a Year, in All Weather Conditions
The Market is Open 365 Days a Year, in All Weather Conditions

Individual stories of the stores and shops and a bit of history of some of the traditional Market shops are provided in this book. In addition, this book also addresses the newest aspect of this historical Philly Market, which is its diversity.

The last 10-15 years has seen the growth of a pronounced Hispanic and Asian component of the Market.  However, the new and emerging stores and street stands in the Market match the growth in the Hispanic and Asian parts of this overall Philadelphia neighborhood.  Most interestingly, this process follows the history of the original Italian Market, where Italian stores served the primarily Italian neighborhood.

These stories and history pieces in the photo book serve to highlight some of the interesting and unique qualities of the broadening of the cultural fabric of the entire neighborhood and the street market that supports it.

But the Market is all about food— some of the best around from several cultures—so a book like this would not be complete without some original Italian Market Recipes as well.

Back Cover of the Photo Book
Back Cover of the Photo Book

I hope that you enjoyed the photography and just a little bit of the story of the historic and iconic Italian Market in Philadelphia, PA.

And I also hope that you’ll find it in yourself to help our project achieve its goal of maintaining and preserving something that we could never build again, no matter how hard anyone tried.

Some things, like the Italian Market, must be preserved.  They are an important part of local and national history and culture.  We lose a little bit of who we are, and who we were, every time we let yet another piece of our history and culture disappear.

So please help to keep this little bit of history and culture alive for many tomorrows with your donation.  Meeting our Kickstarter funding goal, or even beating it, allows us to print the books that, when sold, will raise the funds to continue to maintain and preserve this important Philly cultural icon. 

But also please remember that your donation is not without it's personal reward.....which is your own signed copy of this unique and artistic photo book of Philadelphia's Historic Italian Market.

Also, if you like what you see here, please consider sharing this Kickstarter Project link with your family, friends, work associates and your Friends on Facebook or other social media and relevant websites. 

The more exposure that we get for this Kickstarter Project the greater the likelihood that we'll meet our necessary 100% funding goal so that we can print the new photo book, raise funds to preserve the Italian Market and provide everyone with their copy of this exciting new book.  

Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

At this point, with the project (shooting and book design) already completed, there are no risks to the project being completed. We even have the book printer selected and we've already talked. So the "risk" to completing the project if the funding goal is met is low to zero.

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  • Pledge $5 or more
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    0 backers

    This gift reward is our sincere thanks for helping to make this project a success.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships within the US only
  • Pledge $10 or more
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    1 backer

    A signed thank you card with a picture of the book's cover on it.

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  • Pledge $20 or more
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    1 backer

    A signed thank you card with a picture of the book's cover on it plus a digital PDF of the book sent to you.

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  • Pledge $30 or more
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    30 backers

    A signed thank you card with a copy of the book's cover on it plus a signed copy of the final soft-cover book

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  • Pledge $50 or more
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    8 backers

    A signed thank you card with a copy of the book's cover on it, a signed copy of the final soft-cover book, a signed 16x20 professional print of any image in the book that you choose, and 2 special gifts from the Italian Market Visitors Center.

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    Ships within the US only
  • Pledge $100 or more
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    8 backers

    A signed copy of the final soft-cover book and a signed 16x20 professional print of any image in the book that you choose, an Italian Market apron, plus a special recognition for your support on a "Sponsors" page that will be added to the book that again thanks you for your support of the project. Plus additional unsigned copies of the final soft-cover book for only $15 per book. (Limit 10 books)

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships within the US only
Funding period

- (45 days)