Washington, DC history

The lost and untold history of Washington, DC.

Film Footage of Union Station in 1939

This is some cool old stock footage of the interior at Union Station. Source: Archive.org Don’t forget to check out this great photo of the station in 1963.  

Capitol Building after an epic snowstorm

Beautiful Snowy Photo of the Capitol

Thanks to GoDCer Mollie for sending this in. It looks like a photo from sometime in the 1920s.

An early 1887 design for the memorial bridge across the Potomac River, by Paul J. Pelz.

Grand Construction Plans for Washington in 1906

We’ve posted a couple stories about the unbuilt Grant Memorial Bridge, and did a little research this past weekend to find some more details about it. We came across a great article in The Baltimore Sun from...

"Municipal Building, Southern Railway, and Post Office Department, from the Willard Hotel roof." An ethereal, almost spectral view of Pennsylvania Avenue at 14th Street N.W. in Washington circa 1921, with the Old Post Office tower at left. National Photo Company Collection glass negative.

Streets of Washington Circa 1921

Source: Shorpy How beautiful is this photo down Pennsylvania Avenue? This was taken from the roof of the Willard Hotel in 1921, at the intersection of 14th street. And, if you like this photo, take a...

Washington Celebrates Christmas in 1913

One hundred years ago today, these two images were the front pages of The Washington Times and The Washington Herald, respectively. Merry Christmas GoDCers! Have a great, relaxing time around the tree with your families. Source: Library...

a meteor en route to becoming a meteorite

Meteorite Lands and Explodes in Foggy Bottom

Now this is a seriously bizarre story, and potentially questionable. We came across an article in The Washington Post from August 17th, 1919, detailing an explosion in Foggy Bottom. Local officials were unable to identify the source...

Young Mother’s Mysterious Death; Was She Poisoned?

Here’s an interesting story that we dug up in The Washington Post from August 21st, 1885. A few weeks ago a respectable-looking young woman rang the bell at George Duval’s boarding-house, at the corner of Four-and-a-half...

1939 Film Footage of Lincoln Memorial

This is cool. It’s some old stock film footage of the Lincoln Memorial from 1939, courtesy of Archive.org. Source: Archive.org

Ace Ventura

Poodle Dognapped from Friendship Animal Hospital

What a bizarre story this is. This poor poodle was dognapped while being boarded at Friendship Animal Hospital. We found this story in The Washington Post, printed on February 7th, 1956. A black, pedigreed French poodle–with fancy...

Know Your D.C. Streets

Okay, this isn’t exactly a history post, but it very much is related to your knowledge of our city. We came across some great maps of city streets while browsing one of our favorite sites, Greater...

Map of a Rural Columbia Heights

What a cool map. We posted one last week showing the area around Tenleytown as it looked on an 1892 map. The area covered in the map includes today’s Columbia Heights, Park View, and a little...

American Service Center advertisement

Mercedes-Benz Advertisement in 1961

Check out this old advertisement from The Washington Post. It was printed on June 23rd, 1961, and you can still go to 585 N. Glebe Rd. today to purchase a Mercedes-Benz.

Plan of the west end of the public appropriation in the city of Washington, called the Mall : as proposed to be arranged for the site of the university / to the Committee of the H. of R. of Congress, BHLatrobe, Surveyor of the City of Washington, Jan'y 1816.

Never Built: Proposed University on the National Mall in 1816

So this obviously never happened, but it’s a fascinating proposal for the National Mall, done in 1816. Can you imagine a university sitting where the Lincoln Memorial does today? Source: Library of Congress

1850s Construction Photos of Treasury Building

Here is a cool series of photographs from the 1850s, when the Department of Treasury’s building on 15th St. was under construction. Source: Library of Congress We have a couple other great photos of the Treasury...

Aqueduct Bridge, Georgetown, D.C., looking toward Washington

Beautiful View of Aqueduct Bridge in 1860s

What an amazing old image of Aqueduct Bridge (check out this cool postcard). Source: Library of Congress Here are some more amazing photos if you’d like to spend way too much time on the Internet.

Pres. Nixon w/ Sammy Davis, Jr., new member of Nat'l. Advisory Council on Economic Opportunity

Sammy Davis Jr. and Richard Nixon

Talk about an odd couple. Davis Jr. was in attendance back in 1963 for the March on Washington (we posted a photo earlier). Here, Nixon is granting Sammy Davis, Jr. membership to the National Advisory Council...

When Adams Morgan Was Rural

Difficult to believe this … really difficult, but back in 1892, what is now Adams Morgan, was very rural. Less jumbo slices, more trees. You probably can’t even recognize this, with no 18th St. and 16th...

Where is this?

GoDC Lunchtime Photo Challenge

Okay folks, welcome to the latest GoDC challenge. I know you’re dying to kill some time before the weekend, so here’s a lunchtime quiz for you. The first person to identify this photo and answer the...