A Park View Historic District is in the Works

  • September 1st 2021

by Nena Perry-Brown

Park View Historic District proposed boundaries. Click to enlarge.

Another historic district nomination is up for review.

Earlier this month, Advisory Neighborhood Commission 1A submitted an application to the Historic Preservation Review Board to create the Park View Historic District. The proposed district would encompass 188 buildings and sites at the neighborhood's northernmost end, between Georgia Avenue and the Armed Forces Retirement Home.

Engine Company No. 24. Click to enlarge.

Three of those properties are already on the District's Inventory of Historic Sites: Engine Company No. 24, originally at 3702 Georgia Avenue NW and currently at 3670 New Hampshire Avenue NW (map)*; the Park View School at 3560 Warder Street NW (map); and the Park View Playground and Field House at 693 Otis Place NW (map).

Park View School. Click to enlarge.

The firehouse was built in 1911 and was one of the city's first firehouses to be integrated, and the elementary school was built in 1916 and only admitted white students until 1949 when it became a school for Black students. The playground was one of the city's earliest when it was created in 1920, as was its purpose-built recreation center; the site was also central to the fight for playground integration in the late 1940s.

Georgia Avenue at Rock Creek Church Road, taken by John Wymer in 1949; courtesy of Historical Society of Washington, DC. Click to enlarge.

Aside from those properties, the covered addresses are nearly all residential:

  • 3651-3663 Georgia Avenue NW, which were early commercial/mixed-use additions to the neighborhood;
  • 608-646 Rock Creek Church Road NW;
  • 706-764 Rock Creek Church Road NW;
  • 3626-3640 and 3644-3658 Warder Street NW;
  • 3629-3651 Warder Street NW;
  • 615-641 and 616-638 Quebec Street NW; 
  • 715-765 and 720-768 Quebec Street NW; and
  • 3648-3660 and 3664-3674 Park Place NW.
Princeton Heights along Quebec Street, from the Evening Star circa 1913. Click to enlarge.

Most of the private residences listed above were part of the development of the Princeton Heights subdivision by the Kennedy Brothers from 1909-1919. The neighborhood residences were also originally restricted to white buyers, but Black households were already buying their way in before housing segregation was outlawed and the neighborhood became majority-Black by 1950.

*the application documents identify the site address as 3657 Georgia Avenue NW and 3657 New Hampshire Avenue NW.

This article originally published at https://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/anc-applies-to-designate-park-view-historic-district/18645.

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