The market had humble beginnings in 1779 as a flat meadow that farmers could come to, to sell their locally raised fruit, vegetables, dairy, and livestock.
In 1795, Antoine Soulard was given a 122 acre plot that included the market grounds by his father-in-law, Gabriel Cerre. But, when the United States made the Louisiana Purchase in 1803, Antoine's claim to the land was put in jeopardy.
It wasn't until 1836, after a lengthy legal battle and Antoine's death, that his widow, Julia Soulard, acquired the deed to the land. In 1841, she officially set aside two city blocks to be used as a farmers market.
Since 1841 the market has had two main buildings, one that was built in the late 1840's and was almost destroyed in the great tornado of 1896, and the second that replaced the first, in 1929. The 1929 building is modeled after a 1419 foundling hospital in Florence, Italy and was built in the Renaissance style. It currently houses the Grand Hall Shops on the first floor and gymnasium/theater on the second floor.
Watching this video will give you a small taste of what to expect on a visit Soulard Farmer's Market on a busy day. As you can see, there are a vareity of products offered from numerous vendors.