Washington, DC history

The lost and untold history of Washington, DC.

Washington, D.C. President Lincoln's funeral procession on Pennsylvania Avenue (April 19th, 1865)

Faces & Places of Yesterday

Lincoln’s Funeral Procession Down Pennsylvania Avenue

We dug up this powerful image of Abraham Lincoln’s funeral procession heading down Pennsylvania Avenue on April 19th, 1865. Click on it for better details. Source: Library of Congress

Old Ebbitt House c. 1880

Faces & Places of Yesterday

Great Photo of Old Ebbitt House in 1880

What a terrific photograph of the Old Ebbitt House back in 1880. By 1878 the District had 178 phone lines! Source: Library of Congress

haymarket in Washington, DC

Faces & Places of Yesterday

Awesome Photo of 1865 Haymarket in Washington

What an awesome photograph from the Civil War. This shows a haymarket, with (what I believe to be) the Smithsonian in the background. If I’m mistaken, please let me know what those buildings are. Source: Library...

Union Station in 1977

Notable People & Places

Cool Aerial Photo of Union Station in 1977

This is a cool shot. Looks pretty different from what we have today. Source: Library of Congress

Washington, D.C. Park of Wiard guns at the Arsenal; H.L. Stuart, Nathaniel P. Willis, and Gen. Daniel E. Sickles at right

Faces & Places of Yesterday

Amazing Civil War Photograph of the Arsenal

This is an incredible photograph from the Civil War, showing three men at the Washington Arsenal. By the way, don’t forget to read our guest post by GoDCer Andrew on the explosion that killed 21 at...

Aerial view of Washington, D.C., looking south, southwest, from old Providence Hospital, showing E Street, Duddington Place, F Street, S.E., between 1st and 2nd Streets

Faces & Places of Yesterday

Can You Recognize This Aerial View of E Street SE?

Can you identify any of these old buildings? This is an aerial view of E St. around 1900. Source: Library of Congress

Butler Heights advertisement 1916

Old Ads & Classifieds

Butler Heights: The Best Buy in Washington

Do you know where Butler Heights is (was)? There’s a tiny Butler St. SE today, very close to Frederick Douglass’ old home. This is an advertisement that we found in the Washington Herald from May 13th,...

Capt. B.S. Brown (left); Lt. John P. Shaw, Co. F 2nd Regt. Rhode Island Volunteer Infantry (center); and Lt. Fry (right) with African American men and boy.

Faces & Places of Yesterday

Men at Camp Brightwood During the Civil War

This is a terrific old photo from the Library of Congress. It shows camp Brightwood during Civil War. If you’re into the Cultural Tourism D.C. Heritage Trail, you can read a little more about it on...

a proposed map of the federal district in Washington (1970)

Other Cool Stuff

1970 Plan to Cede D.C. Land to Maryland

Now this is interesting. It’s part of the ongoing debate about home rule here, as well as D.C. statehood. How can we really be autonomous if Congress controls our budget and we aren’t even represented in...

the new auto-bike advertisement

Old Ads & Classifieds

Free Auto-Bike to School Children of Washington

Here’s an interesting advertisement from the Washington Times on November 6th, 1913. Source: Library of Congress

Columbia Heights homes for sale - 1911

Old Ads & Classifieds

Columbia Heights Homes on 14th Street for $425

What a sweet deal! This is an awesome old advertisement from the Washington Times, published on October 28th, 1911. This appears to be the row of homes on the east side of 14th St. NW, between...

Washington Times pocket directory of apartments - 1914

Old Ads & Classifieds, The Best Of

1914 Directory of Apartments and Rent

Now this is cool. And, it’s probably something that makes you a little nauseous, paying that ridiculous $2,300 in rent today. Check out the handy Washington Times pocket directory of apartments from 1914. Some of the...

beautiful colonial estate in Alexandria - 102 S. Royal St.

Old Ads & Classifieds

Beautiful Colonial Estate for Sale in Alexandria

Here is an advertisement from the Washington Times on June 28th, 1913. This is the estate formerly located at 107 South Royal St. 107 South Royal St. in Alexandria looks like this today. [googlemaps https://maps.google.com/maps?q=107+south+royal+st&layer=c&sll=38.804403,-77.043720&cbp=13,217.18,,0,5.92&cbll=38.804429,-77.043696&gl=us&ie=UTF8&hq=&hnear=107+S+Royal+St,+Alexandria,+Virginia+22314&ll=38.804404,-77.04372&spn=0.005711,0.010997&t=m&z=14&iwloc=A&panoid=0ElvL99oRAEjElDVGJ94Fg&source=embed&output=svembed] UPDATE: This...

map of white school divisions - 1907

GoDCers Love Maps

1907 Map Showing New Divisions for White Schools

This is a fascinating map from another era. It shows the divisions in Washington for white schools, published by the Evening Star on June 13th, 1907. Source: Library of Congress

The Mayflower Hotel

Three Things...

Three Bits of Trivia About the Mayflower Hotel

Source: Library of Congress The “Grande Dame of Washington” has seen so much history that it’s difficult to do a post listing just three bit of trivia. Nevertheless, the building that has seen guests like Queen...

Buffalo Paints - Washington Herald (February 5th, 1922)

Faces & Places of Yesterday, In the Paper

February 5th, 1922: Hardware Stores in D.C.

This is a page from the Washington Herald, published on February 5th, 1922. It shows a number of D.C. hardware stores selling Buffalo Paints.

1708 Q St. NW

Old Ads & Classifieds

Superb Stone Residence at 1708 Q Street NW

Here’s a cool ad from The Evening Star. This was published in their Friday, May 4th, 1906 edition. The house at 1708 Q St. NW was for sale, and it could be acquired for the sum...


GoDCers Love Maps

Cool! Rural Mail Delivery Routes for Fairfax County

This is totally fascinating. It’s a map from 1912, published by the U.S. Post Office, showing the rural delivery routes for Fairfax County, back when things were really different and there were plenty of farms there....