By the late 19th century, Jacksonville's 31 wharfs were home to piers, warehouses, and other facilities necessary for handling ships. However, the results of the Great Fire of 1901 transformed the wharfs at the foot of Ocean Street into a special place; the type of place that attracts people from all walks of life and one that tourist flock to in the 21st century, when visiting cities like Seattle, San Francisco, and Philadelphia.
Looking for the unique Jacksonville experience? Would you be interested in visiting a downtown riverfront scene with this lineup of vendors?
Three Bros Fish & Oyster Company
Kelly Produce Company
Denmark Produce Company
George Shiver Produce Company
Donald McLean Grocery
New York Window Cleaning Company
Jos C. Newsom grocery
National Net & Twine Company Inc.
W.J. Ray & Company Produce
Eugene Vanderpool & Son Fish & Oysters
Deep Sea Fisheries Inc
Wald H. Scmickler Wholsale Fish
Jos Weinberger Restaurant
Mayport Fish & Oyster Company
South Block -- Wharf Over River
Gantt Fish Company
Peninsula Fish & Shrimp Company
Charles Labeces Cigars
Peter C Gounaris Restaurant
William Jigetts Restaurant
Jos Stafford Restaurant
Mary Grant Restaurant
Ocean Street Dock Filling Station
Marine Sales & Service Company
Booth Fisheries Company
Florida Fish & Produce Company Inc.
Palmer Brothers Engines Inc
Jax Machine & Dry Dock Company
Sunshine Parking Place
Wilbur R. Dunkel Auto Repair
Jacksonville Fish Company
Leesburg & Jacksonville Transportation Company
Believe it or not, this was all on Ocean Street, south of Bay Street in downtown Jacksonville in 1930. Some have suggested that the Jacksonville Landing would be best suited for repositioning itself as a public market focusing on local cuisine, businesses, waterfront dining, and entertainment. If things turn out that way, it would not be the site's first time playing host to a public market. For the majority of the city's history, the foot of Ocean Street was just that.
1928 Sanborn Map of Ocean Street market. Courtesy of the Jacksonville Public Library Special Collections Department.