“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Foggy Bottom in Washington, District of Columbia — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)

Winder Building

Erected 1848


— Purchased by United States Government 1852 —

Winder Building Marker image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, May 23, 2008
1. Winder Building Marker
Inscription.  During the Civil War this building was Headquarters of the United States Army. Major General Winfield Scott, Major General Halleck and later Lieutenant General U.S. Grant had their offices here. It also housed the Bureau of Military Justice, Engineer Office, Ordnance Office and Office of the Commissioner for the Exchange of Prisoners.

President Lincoln was a constant visitor during the trying days of the war and received here the latest despaches by wire from the Army in the west and by courier from the southern front. In addition to conferences with his military commanders, it is recorded that he often came at night to talk to prisoners held in the cells...
Erected 1950 by National Capital Sesquicentennial Commission.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: War, US Civil. In addition, it is included in the Former U.S. Presidents: #16 Abraham Lincoln, and the Former U.S. Presidents: #18 Ulysses S. Grant series lists.
Location. Marker has been reported permanently removed. It was located near 38° 
Winder Building Entrance image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, May 23, 2008
2. Winder Building Entrance
53.857′ N, 77° 2.379′ W. Marker was in Foggy Bottom in Washington, District of Columbia. Marker was at the intersection of 17th Street Northwest and F Street Northwest, on the right when traveling south on 17th Street Northwest. Located on the Office of the United States Trade Representative building. Touch for map. Marker was at or near this postal address: 600 17th Street Northwest, Washington DC 20006, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this location. Riggs Bank Medallions (within shouting distance of this marker); Riggs Bank General History (within shouting distance of this marker); Riggs Bank Sculptural Elements (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Dwight D. Eisenhower Executive Office Building (about 400 feet away); The Corcoran Gallery of Art (about 400 feet away); These Five-Inch Brass Trophy Guns (about 400 feet away); State, War, and Navy Building (about 500 feet away); Executive Office Building (about 500 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Foggy Bottom.
Also see . . .  Winder Building HABS Documentation. Documentation from the Historic American Building Survey. Includes architectural diagrams and a set of photos dating to the 1970s. (Submitted on April 5, 2009, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.) 
Additional comments.
1. Building was restored as a General Services Administration project.
My construction company restored the Winder Building to its original appearance.
17th Street Side of the Winder Building image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, May 23, 2008
3. 17th Street Side of the Winder Building
This side of the building faces the White House. Note the balcony rail and window facings remain, compared to the photo below.
This was done at the same time as the Federal Home Loan Bank Board Building was under construction.

The Winder Building received a new roof new exterior stucco, new windows with seeded glass as was used in 1850. We also performed interior work the building, installed new elevators and rehabbed the entire building. Since there was no concrete in those days the floors were a series of brick arches. Sand was then laid over the brick to level the floor and then bluestone or slate was placed over it. When Winder built the building, he constructed the first central heating plant with a series of brick flues but I understand it never worked.

The architect for the project was Max Urbahn and he prepared a wonderful book of the history of the building including copies of letters between Winder and the Government negotiating the price for the building. I had one of the books but lost track of it years ago. If anyone is familiar with the book I would like to replace it.

Arthur Herman (ADHERMAN Construction Co. Inc.) Note To Editor only visible by Contributor and editor    
    — Submitted March 2, 2011, by Arthur Herman of Oyster Bay Cove, New York.
Winder Building in the 19th Century image. Click for more information.
4. Winder Building in the 19th Century
This photo, taken sometime after the end of the Civil War, but before 1880, shows the building in a state of disrepair. Paint is peeling and the road is broken up for repairs.

(Photo Source: Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA, Reproduction number: LC-USZ62-135530)
Click for more information.
Credits. This page was last revised on June 11, 2019. It was originally submitted on April 5, 2009, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page has been viewed 2,152 times since then and 9 times this year. Last updated on May 12, 2019, by Ronald J. Baumgarten, Jr. of McLean, Virginia. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on April 5, 2009, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
Paid Advertisement
Mar. 1, 2021