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Adams-Morgan in Washington, District of Columbia — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Life on the Park

Roads to Diversity

 

—Adams Morgan Heritage Trail —

 
Life on the Park Marker image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, March 7, 2009
1. Life on the Park Marker
Inscription. During the Civil War (1861-1865), the Union Army Carver Hospital and barracks occupied Meridian Hill. The facilities attracted African American freedom seekers looking for protection and employment. By war’s end, a Black community had put down rooks. Soon Weyland Seminary opened to train African American clergy and teachers. In the late 1880s, Mary Foote Henderson purchased most of this land and evicted its residents. Many settled in today’s Reed-Cooke neighborhood to your left.

The building across Euclid Street once was painted pink and called the Pink Palace. Mrs. Henderson commissioned it as she began creating her elite enclave. It was designed by her favorite architect, George O. Totten, Jr. (you can see the Pink Palace in the cartoon on this sign). An early owner, Delia Field, widow of Chicago department store mogul Marshall Field, entertained the Prince of Wales here in 1919. Architect Totten lived at 2336 16th Street, later home of the Antioch Law School. Totten would design 11 grand houses, including the elegant 2460 16th, first occupied by the French Embassy. Mrs Henderson originally offered Totten’s 2801 16th Street to the U.S. government for a vice president’s residence. The government declined, so Spain took it for its embassy.

At left is Dorchester House, briefly the residence of John F. Kennedy and
Carver Barracks on Meridian Hill, during the Civil War, In the foreground is 14th St. image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, March 7, 2009
2. Carver Barracks on Meridian Hill, during the Civil War, In the foreground is 14th St.
Illustration on reverse of "Life on the Park" Marker. Special Collections, Gehman Library, George Washington University.
his sister Kathleen in 1941. Across 16th Street is Meridian Hill Hall, Howard University’s first co-ed dormitory. It opened in 1942 as apartments for women war workers at a time of severe housing shortages.


 
Erected by Cultural Tourism DC. (Marker Number 4 of 18.)
 
Location. 38° 55.382′ N, 77° 2.197′ W. Marker is in Adams-Morgan, District of Columbia, in Washington. Marker is on 16th Street, NW just south of Euclid Street , NW. Click for map. Marker is in this post office area: Washington DC 20009, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. A Hilltop for Heroes and Horse Thieves (a few steps from this marker); Embassy of the Republic of Lithuania (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Lithuania's March to Freedom (about 300 feet away); Campus to Army Camps and Back Again (about 300 feet away); Visionary and Park Champion (about 400 feet away); Creating the "City Beautiful" (about 400 feet away); Design Challenges (about 400 feet away); Park Designers (about 400 feet away).
 
More about this marker. At the top of the monument is a photo of Houses later razed for Meridian Hill Park, around 1918. On the right is a photo of a dwelling in
"Life on the Park" Marker, visible on the sidewalk to the right of the Dorchester House - image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, March 7, 2009
3. "Life on the Park" Marker, visible on the sidewalk to the right of the Dorchester House -
view from Meridian Hill Park, across 16th Street.
the park, captioned, Among the designs George Oxley Totten, below, created for Mrs. Henderson was the Louis XIV-style house Embassy of France at 2460 16th Street. Also seen is a drawing of Weyland Seminary, 15th and Euclid Sts., which operated here until it merged into Virginia Union University in Richmond in 1892.

Lower on the right is a photo of the area. The Pink Palace stood out on sparsely built Meridian Hill, 1907. In the lower left is a photo of John F. Kennedy and his sister Kathleen visiting London in 1941, the year they lived in Dorchester House. And to the bottom right are photos illustrating Meridian Hill Apartments. Laborers, right, finish Meridian Hill Apartments, 1942, where two war workers enjoyed modest quarters, above.
 
Also see . . .  Adams Morgan Heritage Trail markers that have been entered in the Historical Marker database. (Submitted on March 20, 2009.)
 
Categories. African AmericansEducationNotable BuildingsNotable PersonsPoliticsWar, US CivilWar, World II
 
Life on the Park Marker (reverse) image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, March 2, 2013
4. Life on the Park Marker (reverse)
Life on the Park Marker, 16th Street, looking north image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, March 7, 2009
5. Life on the Park Marker, 16th Street, looking north
Totten's "Pink Palace" is on the left across Euclid Street, Howard University's Meridian Hill Hall is to the right, on the opposite side of 16th Street.
Life on the Park Marker image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, March 2, 2013
6. Life on the Park Marker
Houses image. Click for full size.
By Adams Morgan Heritage Trail
7. Houses
Houses later razed for Meridian Hill Park, around 1910.
2460 16th Street image. Click for full size.
By Adams Morgan Heritage Trail
8. 2460 16th Street
Among the designs George Oakley Totten created for Mrs. Henderson was the Louis XIV-style house Embassy of France at 2460 16th Street.
George Oakley Totten image. Click for full size.
By Adams Morgan Heritage Trail
9. George Oakley Totten
Weyland Seminary image. Click for full size.
By Adams Morgan Heritage Trail
10. Weyland Seminary
Weyland Seminary, 15th and Euclid Sts., which operated here until it merged into Virginia Union University in Richmond in 1899.
The Pink Palace image. Click for full size.
By Adams Morgan Heritage Trail
11. The Pink Palace
The Pink Palace stood out on sparsely built Meridian Hill, 1907.
Meridian Hill Apartments image. Click for full size.
By Adams Morgan Heritage Trail
12. Meridian Hill Apartments
Laborers finish Meridian Hill Apartments, 1942.
War Workers image. Click for full size.
By Adams Morgan Heritage Trail
13. War Workers
Two war workers enjoyed modest quarters at Meridian Hill Apartments.
Kathleen and Jack Kennedy, 1941 image. Click for full size.
By Adams Morgan Heritage Trail
14. Kathleen and Jack Kennedy, 1941
John F. Kennedy and his sister Kathleen visiting London in 1941, the year they lived in Dorchester House.
Map image. Click for full size.
By Adams Morgan Heritage Trail
15. Map
You Are Here
2460 16th Street image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, April 19, 2015
16. 2460 16th Street
Former French Embassy, designed by George Oakley Totten
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. This page has been viewed 2,367 times since then and 142 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on , by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.   4. submitted on , by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland.   5. submitted on , by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.   6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15. submitted on , by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland.   16. submitted on , by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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