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Historical District in Alexandria, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Retail in Alexandria

City of Alexandria Est. 1749

 
 
Retail in Alexandria Marker image. Click for full size.
By Devry Jones, March 30, 2018
1. Retail in Alexandria Marker
Inscription.  The 500 block of King Street has long been associated with retail trade in Alexandria. In the late 18th century, Adam Lynn, Sr. owned the quarter-block at this corner of King and St. Asaph Streets, where he operated a small bake shop selling biscuits and breads. Upon his death in 1786, his holdings passed to his children and, with the cooperation of his sisters, Adam Lynn, Jr. built several homes and "tenements" on the two streets, providing the resources for him to become a major speculator in Alexandria real estate. Lynn earned his income as a silversmith, jeweler, watch and clockmaker, and his remarkable skills as an artisan were surpassed only by his business savvy and risk-taking during the early 1800s. This period was known as the "Era of Good Feelings," a time when Alexandria's economy prospered. When the "Panic of 1819" struck, Lynn was hit particularly hard and he ultimately lost all of his properties at public auction. However, Lynn's dedication to Alexandria never wavered, and he was an important participant in the political, military and religious activities of the City. Despite his setback, he remained a much-loved and respected
Retail in Alexandria Marker image. Click for full size.
By Devry Jones, March 30, 2018
2. Retail in Alexandria Marker
member of the community until his death in 1835.

Jewish Alexandria
By the early 1850s, more than thirty Jewish families, most from Germany, had moved to Alexandria seeking dignity, freedom and fortune in America. These new immigrants were all involved in the retail trade, selling clothing, shoes, dry goods and scrap in small shops and emporiums along King Street and its adjacent side streets. Within several years of migrating to Alexandria, the close-knit community had formed a Literary Society, Hebrew burial ground and two congregations for worship—one reform, one Orthodox. By 1871, a permanent temple was constructed in the 100 block of North Washington Street, and the newly hired Rabbi began delivering his sermons in English. Temple Beth El served Alexandria's Jewish community at this location for 84 years.

Among the many Jews who succeeded in Alexandria was Joseph Hayman (born Hait) and his descendants who maintained a 90-year retail dynasty in the city, starting out with a small variety shop at 188 North Royal Street and ending with Hayman's legendary store for ladies wear.
 
Erected by City of Alexandria.
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Churches & ReligionIndustry & Commerce
Retail in Alexandria Marker image. Click for full size.
By Devry Jones, March 30, 2018
3. Retail in Alexandria Marker
. In addition, it is included in the Virginia, The City of Alexandria series list.
 
Location. 38° 48.294′ N, 77° 2.763′ W. Marker is in the Historical District in Alexandria, Virginia. Marker is on King Street west of Saint Asaph Street, on the right when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 604 King Street, Alexandria VA 22314, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. George Washington in Alexandria (within shouting distance of this marker); Timberman Brothers (within shouting distance of this marker); Lee-Fendall House (within shouting distance of this marker); Franklin P. Backus Courthouse (within shouting distance of this marker); George Washington Memorial Parkway (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); The Alexandria Lyceum (about 300 feet away); The Methodist Episcopal Congregation of Alexandria (about 300 feet away); Marshall House (about 400 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Historical District.
 
Retail in Alexandria Marker image. Click for full size.
By Devry Jones, March 30, 2018
4. Retail in Alexandria Marker
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on April 17, 2020. It was originally submitted on March 31, 2018, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. This page has been viewed 90 times since then and 13 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on March 31, 2018, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.
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Jun. 7, 2020