Posted tagged ‘history and culture’

Century Old Photos of the Soldiers’ Home Lakes

August 24, 2016

Recently I came across the following two photos of the lower Lake at the Soldier’ Home. The lakes are located just east of the no closed Park Road gate. Judging from the other photos in the collection, I believe the images date to around 1913. I especially like the geese/ducks/swans on the water and the houses on the small island for them.

soldiers home lake

soldiers home lake

Want to Know More About Who Built Our Capital? Check Out Sankofa For Additional Reading

August 9, 2016

During the Democratic National Convention, there was a lot of commentary on Michele Obama’s speech in which she said ““I wake up every morning in a house that was built by slaves. And I watch my daughters, two beautiful, intelligent black young women, playing with their dogs on the White House lawn…”

Sankofa, located at 2714 Georgia Avenue, carries many books about African American history in D.C., such at the title above.

Sankofa, located at 2714 Georgia Avenue, carries many books about African American history in D.C., such at the title above.

It’s a history that was largely unknown to many in the country, and one in which I’m sure people would like to know more. If you are one of those people, I noticed that Sankofa has among the many books it carries on African American history here in D.C. the book Slave Labor in the Capital by Bob Arnebeck. The book describes the use of slave labor to build the Capitol and White House during the most difficult phase of construction from 1792 to 1800.

The book is an easy read, about 150 pages, and priced at $20. I’m about a third the way through it already and don’t regret picking it up in the least.

Check Out the Ward 1 Heritage Guide, Great Overview of Ward 1 History and Neighborhoods

July 20, 2016

The Historic Preservation Office (HPO) finally has the Ward 1 Heritage Guide available on their Website (click on image below). It’s an interesting overview of Ward 1 history, culture, and neighborhoods. HPO’s Ward Heritage Guides and a fun introduction to what makes each Ward/neighborhood special. While I’ve posted it before, you can also check out the Ward 4 guide here.

Ward 1 Heritage Guide

DC Preservation League Launches DC Historic Sites App

May 20, 2016

Earlier this week the DC Preservation League launched a new app that I think it pretty cool. It is called DC Historic Sites and it allows users to quickly get an idea of the historic properties that are located within their community. In addition to providing a map and allowing users to locate recognized historic properties throughout the city, it also includes pictures and text so that you can learn more about the sites.

According to the DC Preservation League’s announcement, the app is still a work in progress. Most notably, not all of DC’s historic landmarks have been included within the database yet. I’ve begun sending in text and photos of landmarks that I know aren’t on the map yet to assist with building it out and expect them to be added shortly.

Even in its current state, the app is really interesting and should be a great way for everyone to learn more about the architectural and cultural history of Washington.

To learn more about D.C.’s historic places and spaces, visit the DC Historic Sites site and download the app.

DC Historic Sites app(Screen shot of DC Historic Sites app showing Park View School listing.)

Three Maps That Provide Insight Into How Park View Developed

May 12, 2016

I was recently alerted to the following three maps of Park View that were created for the Historic Preservation Office/Office of Planning in 2015. I think they are interesting and help provide some context for how the neighborhood was built out. I hope you find them interesting too.

Map 1: This map shows the age of the neighborhood, with eras represented by different colors (darkest color represents the oldest buildings).ParkView_Years

Map 2: This map shows the top five architects represented in the building permit database.ParkView_Architects

Map 3: This map shows the top five builders represented in the building permit database.ParkView_Developers

1930 Photo of Soldiers’ Home Dairy Captures Use of Milking Machine

April 22, 2016

While milking machines have been in common use since the 1920s (with the first practical milking machine developed in the 1890s), I’m guessing that its introduction at the old Soldiers’ Home Dairy might have occurred around 1930 based on the photo below.

Mechanical milking

The  photo was taken at the Soldiers’ Home Dairy on November 20, 1930. The caption states: “Adolph Schneider, dairyman at the United States Soldiers’ Home Dairy, does his daily crossword puzzle while the mechanical maid milks old Bossy. The cow is one of the herd said to be the best Holstein herd in the Country.”

Project Creating Movies from Old Photos Includes York Theater

April 8, 2016

This is something that is really fun (and thanks to those that sent this to me). According to a posting on Sploid from Wednesday, Alexey Zakharov “used a technique where he sliced up antique photos and then carefully animated the various elements, like people, cars, and buildings, to give the appearance of actual moving footage.” What is cool for those that live in Park View is that the York Theater (now the Fisherman of Men church) is featured at the 2:31 minute mark. Nice to see a streetcar roll down Georgia Avenue again.

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