Lost History: Warwick’s Saloon at 13th and Pennsylvania

Let’s do a little lost history again and dig into the old saloon history of our city. We found a great photo of an old saloon called Warwick’s, formerly located at 13th and Penn. Take a look at it below.

- click image for more -
At the bar at Warwick's Cafe, 13th St., NW near Pennsylvania Ave., 1894
At the bar at Warwick’s Cafe, 13th St., NW near Pennsylvania Ave., 1894

Randolph T. Warwick owned an eponymously monikered establishment at 415 13th St. NW. The saloon has a bar, as shown above, and the second floor of the building held a billiard room. The bar opened after a partnership agreement was entered into on November 14th, 1892 to carry on a “saloon and liquor business” on 13th St. As a side note, the lease for the property cost a whopping $175 a month, which wasn’t cheap.

An interesting story we dug up on the establishment was from an article in The Washington Post from March 7th, 1897, detailing a raid by the Secret Service who seized an oil painting due to it closely resembling existing currency. According to the article, around 5 o’clock, two detectives entered the saloon and began questioning Mr. Warwick. Randolph. Initially he wasn’t clear who the men were and began joking around with them, until they identified themselves. At that point, Warwick decided it was best to acquiesce to their request to seize the painting, or risk being arrested.

Take a look below at the 1903 map of where Warwick’s was located. You can see it near the top left of the image, marked as lot 17 in square 291.

1903 map of 13th and Pennsylvania Ave.
1903 map of 13th and Pennsylvania Ave.

 

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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  • ET

    That is a totally awesome photo.

  • Kathleen

    I currently work at 13th and Penn., in the Ronald Reagan Building. I can’t figure out what’s on the saloon site now. Any help?

    • Scott

      Freedom Plaza

      • Scott

        Message cropped out on me- Across from Freedom Plaza, about Half up the side of CVS. At least that’s where it seems to be. 🙂