What H Street Looked Like in 1947

Very different than today … this is what H St. NE looked like a couple of years after World War II.

- click image for more -
At 3rd & H Streets, NE, a streetcar passes an unpaved sidewalk and no-longer existing wall, September 1947
At 3rd & H Streets, NE, a streetcar passes an unpaved sidewalk and no-longer existing wall, September 1947

Source: DDOTDC Flickr

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  • Patrick Lally

    Just as a side note, this is my block. The wall in question is the front entrance to the Convent of the Little Sisters of the Poor and their St. Joseph’s Home for the Aged. They had been caring for the indigent elderly on that site since 1872. After the riots they moved to the Catholic University area where they are today. Their facility became the Capital Children’s Museum and today the building has been restored into the Senate Square Condominiums.

  • Jon

    The sidewalk is paved with bricks.

  • patrick lally

    It is paved with bricks just as today (although this part is now buried under the H Street overpass). It is just that in this photo the center is filled with compacted dirt because there was some sewer construction. The sewer plate is in the background and you can see more construction across the street. I find it interesting that you can see the #12 streetcar to Washington Circle, the tile roof of Stewart’s auto garage (now the site of Giant Foods), and Eddie’s corner store on the 700-Block of Third. Such a great photo. Interestingly enough, if you cross the street in the same direction these boys are walking, right where the Giant is now, that is the block where NBC-4’s Pat Collins grew up and where his father had a noteworthy business at 314 H Street, NE.

  • DH in NE

    I think H St used to go under the train tracks here, like it still does at K and L Streets, prior to the construction of the Hopscotch bridge. Looks like the street sloped down to get enough clearance, perhaps that explains the wall, and its disappearance. Any idea?

    • H-is-for-History

      Yes, the H Street underpass was roughly like the one that I Street NE still has. It is still there, and used by Amtrak for storage.