Adams Morgan in Washington, District of Columbia — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
The Artistic Life
Roads to Diversity
— Adams Morgan Heritage Trail —
The lively scene around you began with an arts movement in the 1950s. Musicians, dancers, and artists found centrally located 18th Street attractive as declining rents made it affordable.
Early on, jazz guitarist Charlie Byrd brought fame to the Show Boat Lounge at 2477 18th Street. Byrd, Keter Betts, and Stan Getz introduced Americans to Brazilian jazz with their best-selling album Jazz Samba (1962). The album was recorded at nearby All Souls Unitarian Church. Byrd headlined at the Show Boat until it closed in 1967.
The arts got a boost from Colin "Topper" Carew, a young architect who created the New Thing Art and Architecture Center. The New Thing (1966-1972) was innovative and free-form, offering arts programs for all ages. one of its five buildings was 2127 18th Street. Carew later became a film maker, contributing to the 1983 film D.C. Cab.
As the New Thing was doing its thing, the Ambassador Theater produced rock concerts with psychedelic sound and light shows. Among the performers in 1967 was an obscure new group, the Jimi Hendrix Experience.
Also in this area was the Whitman-Walker Clinic, the health service for the gay and lesbian community. It operated its second facility at 2335 18th Street from 1980 until 1987. Here it developed its pioneering responses to the AIDS crisis.
Erected 2005 by Cultural Tourism DC. (Marker Number 18.)
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Arts, Letters, Music • Civil Rights • Entertainment. In addition, it is included in the Adams Morgan Heritage Trail series list.
Location. 38° 55.309′ N, 77° 2.551′ W. Marker is in Adams Morgan in Washington, District of Columbia. Marker is on 18th Street Northwest south of Columbia Road Northwest, on the right when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 2444 18th Street Northwest, Washington DC 20009, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Kalorama Triangle (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Tragedy at 18th and Columbia (about 500 feet away); A People Without Murals Is A Demuralized People (about 500 feet Serving the Neighborhood (about 600 feet away); "Suburban" Development (about 600 feet away); Urban Renewal Era (approx. 0.2 miles away); Walter Pierce Park (approx. 0.2 miles away); The Roots of Reed-Cooke (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Adams Morgan.
Also see . . . Roads to Diversity Pamphlet. (Submitted on October 20, 2017, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.)
Additional keywords. LGBT, LGBTQ, 🏳️🌈
Credits. This page was last revised on July 2, 2020. It was originally submitted on October 20, 2017, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. This page has been viewed 164 times since then and 33 times this year. Last updated on July 2, 2020, by Bruce Guthrie of Silver Spring, Maryland. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on May 10, 2019, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. • J. Makali Bruton was the editor who published this page.