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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Silver Spring in Montgomery County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Land, Lumber & Lyrics

Silver Spring Entrepreneurs

 

—Silver Heritage Georgia Avenue —

 
Land, Lumber & Lyrics Marker image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, December 22, 2012
1. Land, Lumber & Lyrics Marker
Inscription. "Three ace promoters of Silver Spring in those days [1920s & 30s], they had a finger in almost every pie." So wrote editor Blair Lee III in August 29, 1947 Maryland News describing his father E. Brooke Lee, James H. Cissel and Frank L. Hewitt.

Cissel and the elder Lee presided over two businesses that played the seminal role in the growth and reputation of Silver Spring in the early 20th century. Cissel's Silver Spring Building Supply Co. and Lee's North Washington Realty Co. originally resided at 8222-26 Georgia Avenue, constructed in 1922. These two pioneers envisioned, built, and sold commercial, industrial and residential properties throughout Silver Spring and Montgomery County. Together with Hewitt, vice president of the Silver Spring Building Supply Co., the trio collaborated in the development of eight neighboring subdivisions during the 1920s onward.

From 1970 to 1987 this building was home to Track Records, a pioneering and top audio recording studio operated and ultimately owned by Mark Greenhouse. Popular with both local and national musicians, artists who recorded here include Linda Ronstadt, Marvin Gaye, Gloria Gaynor, and Peaches and Herb.

The exterior of this landmark Colonial Revival-style brick structure remained virtually intact until 2009 when a renovation dismantled
Land, Lumber & Lyrics Marker image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, July 28, 2011
2. Land, Lumber & Lyrics Marker
significant architectural elements unique to Silver Spring. Originally featured were gray slate roofline canopies, two- and three-over-one double-hung wood sash windows, front entrance doors with stone stoops, and two large display windows facing Georgia Avenue.
 
Location. 38° 59.553′ N, 77° 1.606′ W. Marker is in Silver Spring, Maryland, in Montgomery County. Marker is at the intersection of Georgia Avenue (Route 29) and Ripley Street when traveling south on Georgia Avenue. Click for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 8230 Georgia Avenue, Silver Spring MD 20910, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Burger King (here, next to this marker); Visions Realized (within shouting distance of this marker); Finding a Niche (within shouting distance of this marker); The ‘Mayor’ of Silver Spring (within shouting distance of this marker); Spirited Entertainment (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); First Bank, First Heist (about 300 feet away); ‘Most Lonesome Spot’ (about 400 feet away); Enticing Business (about 400 feet away). Click for a list of all markers in Silver Spring.
 
Also see . . .  Desecration of the Historic 1922 Cissel / Lee Building in Silver Spring, Maryland. YouTube video of the
Measure Twice, Cut Once image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, December 23, 2012
3. Measure Twice, Cut Once
R. Griffin (center with mustache) millwork estimator for the Silver Spring Building Supply Co., poses with millwork employees on July 18, 1924. The Millwork was located diagonally across Ripley Street (then Poplar Street) from the back of 8222-26 Georgia Avenue. A Baltimore & Ohio Railroad siding extended half the length of Ripley Street from the main line of the B&O's Metropolitan Branch, allowing for ease of delivery of lumber and other supplies.
Close-up of photo on marker
Silver Spring Historical Society and E. Brooke Lee
"wreckconstructiion" of the Cissel-Lee Building, April 1, 2009, passionately narrated by Jerry McCoy. (Submitted on July 30, 2014, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland.) 
 
Categories. Industry & CommerceMan-Made Features
 
Building Business image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, July 4, 2014
4. Building Business
This photograph shows the recently completed Silver Spring Supply Co., 8222-26 Georgia Avenue, as featured in a September 24, 1922 Washington Post advertisement proclaiming "All Kinds of Building Material."
Close-up of photo on marker
DC Public library
"A Finger is Almost Every Pie." image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, July 4, 2014
5. "A Finger is Almost Every Pie."
James H. Cissel (center with mustache), president of the Silver Spring Building Supply Co., poses with his employees in this photo taken July 18, 1924 in the ground floor office at 8222-26 Georgia Avenue. Cissel's sister-in-law, Rose A. Clark, sits in the background. Cissel was first president of the Silver Spring National Bank, founded in 1910. He was a founding commissioner of the Maryland-National Park & Planning Commission in 1927, donating portions of his vast land holdings to preserve the original bucolic nature of Silver Spring, and helped create the M-NCPPC park system.
Close-up of photo on marker
Silver Spring Historical Society and E. Brooke Lee
All in a Day's Work image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, December 22, 2012
6. All in a Day's Work
Still from a 1927 silent film produced by the North Washington Realty Co. that promoted downtown Silver Spring and its neighboring residential communities. The man in the white shirt looking out the second floor window of 8222-26 Georgia Avenue is likely D. Brooke Lee.
Close-up of photo on marker
Silver Spring Historical Society
Promoting Preservation image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, December 23, 2012
7. Promoting Preservation
Silver Spring Historical Society founder Jerry A. McCoy points out the intact 1922 "Cissel-Lee Building" at 8222-26 Georgia Avenue to a group of visitors during a 2008 walking tour of historic Silver Spring. The photo shows the original gray slate roofline canopies and 3-over-one double hung wood sash windows (the "eyes" of the structure).
Close-up of Marcie Stickle's photo on marker
The Cissel-Lee Building, 2009 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, March 22, 2009
8. The Cissel-Lee Building, 2009
Super Pawnbroker image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, March 22, 2009
9. Super Pawnbroker
The Cissel-Lee Buildng on the verge of renovation, 2009.
Urban Butcher image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, July 4, 2014
10. Urban Butcher
In 2014, the severely modernized Cissel-Lee Building houses The Urban Butcher.
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. This page has been viewed 347 times since then and 49 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10. submitted on , by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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