Whoa … Check Out This Old Photo of Southwest Waterfront

The photo wasn’t labeled, but I’m guessing this is from the between the 1900s and 1910s? This is from our buddy John DeFerrari over at Streets of Washington.

- click image for more -
southwest Washington
southwest Washington

Source: Streets of Washington Pinterest

Here is today's recommendation for you. We think you'll like it!

  • I estimate the photo was taken about 1915.

    • Tom

      Thanks John! Great find.

  • Publius Washingtoniensis

    At its earliest, the photo dates from sometime after 1907, since the War College, which dominates the point at Fort McNeir, then Washington Arsenal, was completed that year. Improvement of East Potomac Park began after 1911, but it’s hard to tell whether the trees along the shoreline are “volunteers” or formal plantings.

  • NWC 94

    Picture would date from at least 1903 as Roosevelt Hall at the tip of the peninsula appears complete or at least near completion. It’s cornerstone was placed in 1903 and building completed / occupied in 1907.

  • Ptricia Wimsatt Myler

    About that time there were a number of prominant lumber wharves on the waterfront, including Johnson & Wimsatt. The two larger ships that you see docked along the wharf were owned by Johnson & Wimsatt and are the schooners the 95″ Josephine Wimsatt and the 125′ Mabel & Ruth. These ships brought number north from North Carolina and then took fertilizer south to NC. Records of 1900 note that Johnson & Wimsatt unloaded 4 million lathes of lumber. In 1907 there was a major fire at J & W and flames shot more than 100′ in the air lighting up the whole waterfront. The fire boat the “firefighter” fought the fire along with the nearby steamer (probably one in the picture) and they formed a curtain of water for hours. In 1930 a ram, the Kinkora, joined the fleet of J & W. All boats were retired by 1940 when train side rails were brought into the area and lumber was shipped by rail. Patricia Wimsatt Myler