Why Is It Named U Street?

Ben's Chili Bowl (Wikipedia)
Ben’s Chili Bowl (Wikipedia)

I took a fair bit of time to do a little research into how U street got its name. After some research, it was abundantly clear that this wouldn’t be a short post.

This is an area of D.C. that has a rich history, went through some rough times, but has risen to become the core of the city’s renaissance. The story of U street might not be as obvious as you think, and it will definitely surprise you.

I also came across some excellent archival footage of U street in its heyday. The really interesting stuff doesn’t start until about 45 seconds into the film, but it’s worth the wait. I think you’ll like it.

Seriously? You clicked “Why Is It Named U Street?” … point goes to @GhostsofDC for the bait and switch. Enjoy the video. Happy Friday!

…WAIT! This isn’t just a rickroll. There is local relevance.

Our favorite Internet meme, Rick Astley, was in town and played at Merriweather on August 28th, 1989 (Pete Rose was permanently banned from baseball four days earlier). It gets better. Martika opened!

Rick Astley at Merriweather (1989)
Rick Astley at Merriweather (1989)

Please tell me someone reading this post was at this concert. Next time I’m going to Paula Abdul you.

About Tom

Tom founded Ghosts of DC on January 4th, 2012 as a blog to uncover the lost and untold history of Washington, D.C. He has lived in the city for over a decade and loves exploring every corner of the District.

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