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

16th Street Heights in Washington, District of Columbia — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Crossroads Create Community

Battleground to Community

 

— Brightwood Heritage Trail —

 
Crossroads Create Community Marker image. Click for full size.
By Devry Becker Jones, February 29, 2020
1. Crossroads Create Community Marker
Inscription.  
The Grand, Neo-classical Revival style building that you see across Georgia Avenue north of Missouri opened in 1925 as the Bank of Brightwood, thanks to efforts of the Brightwood Citizens Association. Designed by Treasury Department architect Arthur Blakslee, the bank's ornate Corinthian columns seem to say "this is a serious institution!" Its arrival reflected the area's growth as a place of business.

The community's development began in earnest after Congress united Washington City (south of Florida Avenue) with Washington County (north of Florida Avenue to the District Line) in 1871. Soon Land developers envisioned housing where farmers grew wheat.

First came Brightwood Park, just south of today's Emery Park: 82 acres of the estate originally granted to James White in 1772. Next came "White-Coft," west of today's Georgia Avenue at Madison Street, followed by North Brightwood, east of today's Georgia Avenue to Eighth Street and north from Rittenshouse to Tuckerman.

The bank supported these ventures, but failed in 1932, victim of the Great Depression and embezzlement. The Bank building was sold
Crossroads Create Community Marker image. Click for full size.
By Devry Becker Jones, February 29, 2020
2. Crossroads Create Community Marker
in 1940.

The small Art Deco building beside the bank at 5915 was designed by William Russell as a restaurant with office space above. Its modern facade used glass blocks and large blue glass plates. In the 1940's George "Pops" Valltos operated the Seven Seas Grill there serving steaks and chops. In the 1970s, Jen Cheng and Lana H.C. Shao moved their Chinese restaurant there from Shaw, and decided the Seven Seas name worked for them as well.
 
Erected 2008 by Cultural Tourism DC. (Marker Number 4.)
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: ArchitectureAsian AmericansIndustry & CommerceRoads & Vehicles. In addition, it is included in the Brightwood Heritage Trail series list.
 
Location. 38° 57.659′ N, 77° 1.689′ W. Marker is in 16th Street Heights in Washington, District of Columbia. Marker is at the intersection of Georgia Avenue Northwest (U.S. 29) and Missouri Avenue Northwest, on the right when traveling south on Georgia Avenue Northwest. Marker is on the sidewalk between " 5798 Georgia Ave NW and 1200 Missouri Avenue. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 5798 Georgia Avenue Northwest, Washington DC 20011, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Build It And They Will Come
Crossroads Create Community Marker image. Click for full size.
By Devry Becker Jones, February 29, 2020
3. Crossroads Create Community Marker
(within shouting distance of this marker); A Streetcar Named Brightwood (about 600 feet away, measured in a direct line); Mayor Emery and the Union Army (approx. 0.2 miles away); The Rock on Brightwood Avenue (approx. 0.2 miles away); “Get Down You Fool” (approx. 0.2 miles away); Aunt Betty's Story (approx. 0.2 miles away); School Days (approx. 0.2 miles away); Fort Stevens (approx. 0.2 miles away).
 
Bank of Brightwood image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 19, 2013
4. Bank of Brightwood
The Bank of Brightwood was founded in 1923. This building was built in 1925 and in July 1932 a run on the bank closed it. The bank president Raymond Schreiner was indicted for embezzlement. This made Bank of Brightwood one of only 4 Washington banks to fail during the Great Depression.
Bank of Brightwood Building image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 19, 2013
5. Bank of Brightwood Building
Today, the Bank of Brightwood building is "Little Rascals" doggy daycare.
B of B Medallion image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 19, 2013
6. B of B Medallion
Bank of Brightwood medallion on the archivolt around the door of the Bank of Brightwood building.
Corinthian Capital image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 19, 2013
7. Corinthian Capital
On the Bank of Brightwood Building
The Seven Seas Restarant image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 18, 2013
8. The Seven Seas Restarant
Built between 1929 and 1930 this Art Deco Building was fronted with Vitrolite tiles set in aluminum frames. The tiles have disappeared.
Seven Seas Restaurant image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 19, 2013
9. Seven Seas Restaurant
Remnant of architectural detail with graffiti
Seven Seas Restaurant image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 19, 2013
10. Seven Seas Restaurant
Glass bricks
Seven Seas Restaurant image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 18, 2013
11. Seven Seas Restaurant
and office space above
Kendejah Restaurant and Lounge image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 19, 2013
12. Kendejah Restaurant and Lounge
This now-closed restaurant occupied the space occupied by the Laundry and the Bar in 1949.
Chocolate Crust image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 19, 2013
13. Chocolate Crust
This chocolatier occupies the site of the 1949 office supply store. The brand-new banner covers the sign of the preceding business "Washington Deli".
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on August 6, 2020. It was originally submitted on May 22, 2013, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. This page has been viewed 685 times since then and 30 times this year. Last updated on April 6, 2014, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on March 1, 2020, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.   4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13. submitted on May 22, 2013, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
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Aug. 10, 2020