Skip to main content

The High Point Market

For those who are in the furniture industry, whether they design furniture, sell furniture, or are collectors who love furniture; there is an event that is held twice a year that shouldn’t be missed. The High Point Market, the largest home furnishings industry trade show in the world, features exhibitors from all across the globe who gather to show off some of the most incredible furniture options they have to offer. High Point is home to two furniture trade shows every year, and the traffic is quite impressive for the High Point Airport – as 70,000 to 80,000 attendees from different countries all congregate in High Point, which itself has a population of just over 100,000.

About The High Point Market

The market is an opportunity for those in the furniture industry to network in a meaningful way, while also analyzing emerging trends and evaluating the competition, as well. The market is celebrating over 100 years in existence, as the first High Point Market took place in 1909. The only time that the market was “suspended”, was during World War II but the postwar economic boom helped the High Point Market considerably as Americans had disposable income to purchase more furniture than ever. Because of its focus on furniture, the market might not be as well-known as other tourist events such as New Orleans’ Mardi gras, or the Coachella Festival, in Indio, California but it is North Carolina’s most significant economic event in general. The event doesn’t just usher in international visitors through High Point Airport, who are eager to stay at local hotels and spend money with local businesses – the market is estimated to have an impact of well over $6 billion.

Sociological Interest

One of the reasons that the market has been able to thrive over the years is because there are real historical roots in the area when it comes to furniture. While many might have taken a recent trip through the High Point Airport for business reasons, and been excited to explore the market’s exhibits – the truth is that an agricultural depression allowed for cheap labor during the 1800s when there was an increase in demand for furniture and together the city was transformed into a major furniture manufacturing city. This unique history that allowed High Point to succeed has been examined by sociologists who were curious about how that transformation took place. Specifically, John Schlitmann has studied the history of the city in a 2009 study, explaining how High Point was able to position itself as an essential aspect of the global furniture industry. The Piedmont area allowed for an abundance of timber, and the location of the city made High Point convenient for transport, and other sociologists and economists, including individuals such as Richard Florida, and Michael Porter, have examined the history of the city as well.

A Gem of a City

High Point Market Thanks to the High Point Market, High Point is known as “North Carolina’s International City”. Indeed, this is a testament to the international visitors that pour in through the High Point Airport and stimulate the region economically every year. Another interesting fact about High Point is that it is the only city that extends into four counties, as well. For those who travel through the High Point Airport twice a year – whether they are in the furniture business or just love furniture, there are some other incredible things to do in the city. One notable attraction for literary buffs is the High Point Public Library, which features hundreds of thousands of books, videotapes, music recordings, and more. The Museum of Old Domestic Life offers a fascinating peek into American history, and aims to give the visitor a complete idea of what life was like in the 1800s. The High Point Market is an excellent example of how a small city was able to become an important factor in a global industry in a way that many couldn’t have imagined. The High Point Airport ushers in more people in April and October (collectively) than actually live in the city, showing just how important the market is to the industry, city, and state in general.