Washington, DC history

The lost and untold history of Washington, DC.

wolves are super scary

Wolf Escapes From Zoo, Terrorizing Cleveland Park

This is pretty scary. The crazy headline in The Washington Post on October 19th, 1902 was the cryptic and terrifying “Mad Wolf From Zoo.” Below is the account of multiple attacks in Cleveland Park. Residents of...

January 5, 1926. Washington, D.C. "Traffic Director Eldridge inspecting new lights." National Photo Company Collection glass negative.

Red, Yellow, Green: Some D.C. Traffic Light History

This is one of those “did you know” posts, sharing some great trivia to share with your friends. It’s the kind you’re more likely to dig up on one of our favorite blogs, Greater Greater Washington....

Ghost Dog visits the Duke Ellington Bridge

Ghost Dog Fetches Three Stories About the Duke Ellington Bridge

Ghost Dog went on another walk this past weekend to seek out three more stories for the GoDC community. This time, she passed through Adams Morgan, en route to the Duke Ellington Bridge (formerly known as...

newspapers

Behind the Scenes at Ghosts of DC

The work we do behind the scenes isn’t terribly difficult, but it is ridiculously time consuming, especially the longer posts in “Three Things…” or “If Walls Could Talk.” One of those can take anywhere between two hours to...

May 30th, 1886 real estate advertisement (Washington Post)

May 30th, 1886 Three-Story Brick Houses for Sale

The text is a little small and difficult to read, but this is really interesting. This is an advertisement I dug up from May 30th, 1886 in The Washington Post. You could have a pretty nice...

Washington Post headline - March 6th 1927

Autos Collide on Florida Avenue; Young Teacher Killed

This is not an article you’re going to see today in the newspaper. Although, you’re more than likely to see a scene like this in a movie. This brutally gory article, published on March 6th, 1927,...

this is a whip

Three Women Take Revenge Against Special Policeman

This likely was a scene of great amusement for any who were able to witness it. This is an article from August 9th, 1894 in the Washington Post. Three irate women with horse whips and a...

Winfield Scott Hancock statue

What Happened to Hancock Circle at 16th and U?

Many of you are probably shocked to hear that there was a traffic circle at 16th and U St. The intersection is already a nightmare, with New Hampshire crossing at a diagonal. If you cross as...

this is a brick

D.C. Gang Violence … Circa 1896

Have you ever seen the comprehensive list of D.C. gang names from 2008? It definitely doesn’t account for the 1896 South Washington Toughs from the rough parts of Southwest D.C. Here’s a great article we came...

Circa 1902. "The Waldorf-Astoria, New York." The original, and somewhat forbidding, Waldorf at Fifth Avenue and 34th Street. (Shorpy)

Officer Sprinkle Parties at the Waldorf-Astoria

Our favorite officer and the patron saint of Ghosts of DC, Officer Sprinkle, took a trip up to New York City with a group of 21 contest winners from The Washington Post. Twenty-one winners in the...

Georgia Ave. street sign

Why Is It Named Georgia Avenue?

Okay, it’s not a huge mystery why some of our major streets are named after states in the Union. This was part of the grand plan of L’Enfant, to have grand boulevards at diagonals, all across...

1935 map of D.C. juvenile delinquents

1935 Map of Juvenile Delinquents in Washington

This is totally fascinating. GoDCer, and early contributor, John sent along an awesome site, which is a gold mine for old maps. This is one of our early favorites. It is a map from 1935, plotting all...

The Northumberland (Wikipedia)

Three Stories from the Northumberland Apartments

Faithful and extremely patient GoDCer Jeff requests some time ago that we do a piece on the Northumberland, just north of U St. Our apologies for the long delay in getting to your request, but hopefully...

What To Wear To Inaugural Events (in 1969)

Plenty of Washingtonians will spend inaugural weekend re-learning how to tie a bow tie or remembering to stash comfortable shoes for late-night post-Ball hijinks.  What to wear?  It’s always a question — for those shelling out big bucks...

March 22, 1924. Washington, D.C. "Theodore Roosevelt III, boxing." National Photo Company Collection glass negative.

Scrawny Teddy Roosevelt III Boxing With Another Kid

This is an interesting shot of Teddy Roosevelt III, the grandson of President Teddy Roosevelt. He’s the scrawny kid on the right.

April 1943. Washington, D.C. "Pin boy at a bowling alley." Nitrate negative by Esther Bubley for the Office of War Information.

Duckpin Bowling in the 1940s

You’re probably not going to find too many alleys where you can go duckpin bowling. This is a shot of a pinsetter at Washington alley in 1943.

April 28, 1923. Washington, D.C. "McGrew of Nationals, Harriss of Athletics." Two tall pitchers -- Washington's Slim McGrew goes up against Philadelphia's Slim Harriss. National Photo Company Collection glass negative.

Two Dudes Named Slim. Who is Taller?

Excited about the upcoming baseball season? The Nats are going all in, especially with their last signing. The dude on the right is Philadelphia’s Slim Harriss and the one on the left is Washington’s Slim McGrew....

The Washington Herald on January 17th, 1913

January 17th, 1913: President-Elect Wilson Bans Inaugural Ball

Going to an Inaugural Ball this weekend? The austerity of Obama’s second mirrors the desires articulated by newly elected President Woodrow Wilson. Take a look at the front page of the Washington Herald on Friday, January...