This was the name for the Lower East Side blocks centered on Essex Street, once home to 80 pickle merchants.
Some sold the briny street food from shops. Others worked out of pushcarts.
“By 1659, Dutch farmers in New York grew cucumbers all over the area that is now known as Brooklyn,” states the New York Food Museum.
Pickles are still popular, of course, but they’ve long available in supermarkets in jars. Today, only one merchant remains on Essex Street.
But the pickle gets a yearly shout-out on the Lower East Side during International Pickle Day every October.
Middle photo: Martha Cooper/Municipal Arts Society; bottom photo: NYPL Digital Collection
Tags: Essex Street Pickles, Guss Pickles, International Pickle Day, Lower East Side life, New York Street Food, NYC street vendors, Pickle District, Pickle Guys, Pickle Vendors, Pickles Lower East Side