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1940s

What was Washington, D.C. like in the 1940s? Take a look at our great posts with stories, people, photos, and history about the District from the forties.

Machine gun sets up outside the Lincoln Memorial on December 8th, 1941

Machine Guns at the Lincoln Memorial

The day after Pearl Harbor this is what the Lincoln Memorial looked like. Reminds me a little of what downtown Washington looked like the day after 9/11.
Washington, D.C. Automobile store on 14th Street which has stock of frozen cars

Car Dealerships Prohibited From Selling During World War II

These photos show a cool old building on 14th St. in Logan Circle which still stands today. It used to be an automobile dealership and the photos below are from 1942 during World War II. In January of 1942 the...
Nourse House in 1947

Before Sidwell Friends: The Nourse House

This lovely photo is captioned as the Charles Joseph Nourse House in Tennallytown (read about the name’s history). This is the main administrative house today and it’s known as Zartman House. It’s a beautiful old farm house, originally constructed in...
A crowd lines up for the movie, "Love Letters," starrring Jennifer Jones and Joseph Cotton, at the Republic Theatre on the north side of the 1300 block of U Street, 1945-1946.

What Did U Street Look Like in the 1940s?

Check out this photo showing the old Republic Theatre at 13th and U St. back then. The theater opened up back on May 30th, 1921, one block west of the Lincoln Theatre, which still stands. Unfortunately, it was knocked down...
Temple Court off D Street and Delaware, SW, Washington, D. C.

What Did Southwest D.C. Used to Look Like?

This old photograph shows Southwest D.C. as it looked in the late 1930s and early 1940s. Source: New York Public Library I can’t really even orient myself to where this is today as the place has changed so much. This is...
Lincoln Memorial in 1944

Incredible 1944 Photo of Lincoln Memorial

is this one of the most impressive photos of the Lincoln Memorial? Source: Library of Congress 
Capital Transit demonstration run of a Twin Coach articulated bus (a model they did not end up using), April 3, 1948. This turnaround is still used by buses today [photo by Robert S. Crockett].

Calvert Street Bus Turnaround in 1948

Check this out. It looks as it does today, minus the Toddle House in the background which is now Mama Ayesha’s. Source: Flickr user rockcreek
1940s. "Arlington County, Virginia. War Department. Pentagon, aerial view." Safety negative by Theodor Horydczak.

Pentagon Seen From the Air in the 1940s

This photo is something that probably wouldn’t be shot today. At least, not easily, without military notification and support. So, enjoy this rare photo of the Pentagon as seen from above. Source: Shorpy
1942. "Effect of gasoline shortage in Washington, D.C." Note the streetcar control tower. Photo by Albert Freeman, Office of War Information.

What Did 14th St. Look Like During World War II?

Check out this cool photo we dug up on Shorpy. Also, check out the sweet Senate Beer advertisement below the clock. Looks like this photo was taken at 11:14 am. Source: Shorpy

The Little Green House on K Street

This is a guest post by Angela Harrison Eng  At a first glance, there is nothing monumental about 1625 K Street NW. A bland building occupies the space, along with several nondescript businesses and a parking garage. However, on this...