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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Columbia Heights in Washington, District of Columbia — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Nob Hill

Cultural Convergence

 

—Columbia Heights Heritage Trail —

 
Nob Hill Marker image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, July 18, 2015
1. Nob Hill Marker
Inscription. For Nearly 50 Years, this corner was home to Nob Hill Restaurant, one of the nation's first openly gay bars for-and run by-African Americans.

Started in the 1950s as a private social club, Nob Hill went public in 1957. Patrons enjoyed entertainment ranging from male dancers to weekly “Gospel Hours” with local church choirs. One regular called the low-key club “a house party that charged a cover.” When Nob Hill closed in 2004, it was considered DC's longest-operating gay bar.

Across Kenyon Street are the playing fields of Harriet Tubman Elementary School. The school opened in 1970 amid controversy over whether it would destroy the neighborhood's essential character. Despite resident efforts to block the school; construction went ahead, displacing 17 longstanding businesses along 11th Street and fine, three-story rowhouses on 13th, Irving, and Kenyon Streets.

The remaining single-story commercial strip behind you dates back to the early 1910s, shortly after the 11th Street streetcar line arrived and increased foot traffic here.

As you proceed to Sign 8, you'll pass Columbia Road, where Ralph Bunche lived at number 1123 in the early 1930s. Bunche later founded Howard University's Political Science Department and served as a U.S. diplomat. For his work on established
Nob Hill Marker image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, July 18, 2015
2. Nob Hill Marker
the state of Israel, Bunche received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1950, the first African American so honored.
 
Erected by Cultural Tourism DC. (Marker Number 7.)
 
Location. 38° 55.804′ N, 77° 1.678′ W. Marker is in Columbia Heights, District of Columbia, in Washington. Marker is at the intersection of Kenyon Street and 11th Street Northwest on Kenyon Street. Click for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1101 Kenyon St NW, Washington DC 20010, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Charles R. Drew and Lenore Robbins Drew (about 600 feet away, measured in a direct line); "Treat Me Refined" (approx. 0.2 miles away); From Beer Garden to Park View (approx. ¼ mile away but has been reported missing); Urban Oasis (approx. ¼ mile away); Main Street (approx. ¼ mile away); The Next Wave (approx. ¼ mile away); Girard Street Elites (approx. 0.3 miles away); The Modern Shopper (approx. 0.3 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Columbia Heights.
 
Also see . . .
1. D.C.'s oldest gay bar keeps flying under the radar. By Justin Moyer, The District Line, January 26, 2001 (Submitted on July 19, 2015, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland.) 

2. DC's oldest bar, Nob Hill, shuts its doors after 50 years
Stores on 11th Street. image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, July 18, 2015
3. Stores on 11th Street.
These stores on 11th Street were razed to build Harriet Tubman Elementary School.
Close-up of photo on marker
. By Sean Bugg and Randy Shulman, Metro Weekly, February 25, 2004. (Submitted on July 19, 2015, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland.) 
 
Additional keywords. Gay Americans
 
Categories. African AmericansEducationIndustry & CommerceMan-Made Features
 
Recreation Center image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, July 18, 2015
4. Recreation Center
This recreation center on Kenyon was also razed to make way for Harriet Tubman Elementary.
Close-up of photo on marker
Townhouses image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, July 18, 2015
5. Townhouses
Also razed to make way for Tubman Elementary.
Close-up of photo on marker
Tubman Elementary image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, July 18, 2015
6. Tubman Elementary
Children enjoyed the new Tubman Elementary School playground, 1976.
Close-up of photo on marker
Ralph Bunche and Marian Anderson image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, July 18, 2015
7. Ralph Bunche and Marian Anderson
Nobel Prize winner Ralph Bunche received the Diamond Cross of Malta from previous year's recipient Marian Anderson, 1951.
Close-up of photo on marker
1123 Columbia Road image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, July 18, 2015
8. 1123 Columbia Road
Ralph Bunche lived in this house.
Close-up of photo on marker
1123 Columbia Road image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, July 18, 2015
9. 1123 Columbia Road
Nob Hill image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, July 18, 2015
10. Nob Hill
Nob Hill nightclub, photographed in May 2003.
Close-up of photo on marker
1101 Kenyon Street image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, July 18, 2015
11. 1101 Kenyon Street
For the last 11 years the building that housed Nob Hill has been the Wonderland Ballroom.
Dining, Dancing... image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, July 18, 2015
12. Dining, Dancing...
The Wonderland Ballroom image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, July 18, 2015
13. The Wonderland Ballroom
Beer Taps<br>Behind the bar<br>in the Wonderland Ballroom image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, July 18, 2015
14. Beer Taps
Behind the bar
in the Wonderland Ballroom
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. This page has been viewed 233 times since then and 6 times this year. Last updated on , by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14. 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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