Washington, DC history

The lost and untold history of Washington, DC.

Camp Leach 1918

GoDCers Love Maps

Camp Leach: When Chemical Weapons Were Made at American University

Many don’t know that the U.S. military began its chemical weapons program on the grounds of today’s American University in upper northwest D.C. Nearly 100,000 employees worked at Camp Leach during World War I. Looking at...

Featured, Historical Events

When the Nationals Won the World Series

For those of you who watched the Nationals last night close out a huge win on the road in Houston, we’ve waited a long time for this. Sure, it’s not the Cubs or Red Sox and...

From the Crazy Vault

Dulles Airport Hijacking

Arthur G. Barkley was an unemployed bread truck driver from Phoenix hijacked a Washington-bound TWA jet, demanding $100 million in ransom. He was distraught from losing his job, became embroiled in lawsuits against his employer, the...

Faces & Places of Yesterday

DCJCC in 1926

You're looking at a cool old photo from 1926, showing the DCJCC at 16th and Q St.

Faces & Places of Yesterday

What Did Petworth Look Like in the 1930s?

This lovely old photo of Washington shows the Petworth neighorhood from the air in the 1930s. Any idea where this is in Petworth? Also, for those in Petworth who thumb their nose at the suburban dwellers...

Faces & Places of Yesterday

Garfinckel’s Department Store in 1939

Take a look here at Garfinckel’s at 14th and F St. NW near the Treasury Building. The building still stands and is where The Hamilton is today.

Notable People & Places

Governor Clinton Delivers 1980 Georgetown Commencement

Here’s a rare one. You’re looking at then-governor Clinton of Arkansas, and Georgetown graduate, delivering the commencement speech at Georgetown for the graduating class of 1980. Any of you readers graduate with that class?

Faces & Places of Yesterday

Georgetown University Graduation Ceremonies in 1925

Congratulations to the Class of 2019. Now you’re ready for the rest of your lives! Take a little inspiration from this lovely historic photo showing your predecessors graduating in the late spring of 1925. Actually, I...

Faces & Places of Yesterday

Western High School in 1919

Back then it was called Western High School. Washington had that school north of Georgetown, Eastern High School near Capitol Hill and Central High School just north of U St.

In the Paper

1953’s Air Travel Predictions

We love old predictions of the future like this. This was an article from The Washington Post printed on December 18th, 1953, the day after the 50th anniversary of their first flight at Kitty Hawk in...

Then and Now

Then and Now: McPherson Square Building

Today the building at 910 15th St. NW, right off of McPherson Square is the Camden Parc Apartments. Back

Old Ads & Classifieds

Harry Wardman’s Woodley Park Homes

Harry Wardman was a prolific developer of Northwest in the 1920s. This ad from The Evening Star shows some of his homes on Cathedral Ave. in Woodley Park.

Faces & Places of Yesterday

1950s Film Footage of Washington

Film footage of Washington shows how different things were. Listen to some of the narrative, including the past about George Washington’s slaves “living happily in their quarters.” Yes, that was really said.

Notable People & Places

Trump Hotel in 1919

Here is the lovely Old Post Office Pavilion, currently the Trump Hotel on Pennsylvania Ave.

Traffic on I-66

From the Crazy Vault

What Is Nestoring?

Autumn 1984, Washington DC – It was the best of times, it was the worst of traffic. In September of 1984, The Washington Post published a story about a horrendous Beltway accident. Though numerous letters were...

Lost History

Amazing 1870s Railroad Photos of Washington

These 1870s photos are incredible, showing the District just following the Civil War. Click on them for more details.

Guest Posts, Historical Events

It’s 4:20 Somewhere

Hazy blue smoke surrounds the origins of the annual Fourth of July Smoke-In. Though it now takes place in Lafayette Square, across the barricaded street from the White House, it began on the Mall.

Notable People & Places

1879 Smithsonian Construction

This great old photo shows the Arts and Industries Building on the Mall under construction in 1879. And below we found an interesting 1878 rendering of what the building should look like. And finally, here’s a...