Brightwood in Washington, District of Columbia — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Build It And They Will Come
Battleground to Community
— Brightwood Heritage Trail —
In 1818 the Private Rockville and Washington Turnpike Co. began building a road to link Washington City to Rockville, Maryland. This road helped create a village. A toll gate on what today is Georgia Avenue between Quackenbos and Rittenhouse streets encouraged travelers to pause here. Lewis Burnett built a roadhouse, or restaurant, just across Missouri Avenue to your left. By the early 1860s the roadhouse became Moreland Tavern, offering sleeping accommodations. During the Civil War, the tavern housed the officers who would lead the defense of nearby Fort Stevens during the Confederate attack.
The tavern made way for the wood frame home of Stansbury Masonic Lodge No. 24. The hall, in addition to meeting and secret ceremonial spaces, included the income producing Brightwood Hotel. The Freemasons are an ancient fraternal organization with roots in the building trades. Members continue to do good works and create fellowship. Washington’s Freemasons served in all professions, from bricklayer to president.
In 1919 Stansbury Lodge member Frank Russell White designed a grand new limestone temple. Its main meeting room could
The Freemasons rented meeting spaces to a Greek Sunday school, high school fraternities, synagogues and others. After Stansbury Lodge moved to Takoma in 1987, the neoclassical building was sold. In the 1990s. it gained brief notoriety as a nightclub. In 2007 it reopened as the Lofts at Brightwood.
Erected 2008 by Cultural Tourism DC. (Marker Number 5.)
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Fraternal or Sororal Organizations • Roads & Vehicles • War, US Civil. In addition, it is included in the Brightwood Heritage Trail series list. A significant historical year for this entry is 1818.
Location. 38° 57.685′ N, 77° 1.692′ W. Marker is in Brightwood in Washington, District of Columbia. Marker is at the intersection of Missouri Avenue Northwest and Georgia Avenue Northwest (U.S. 29), on the right when traveling west on Missouri Avenue Northwest. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 5900 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. Crossroads Create Community (within shouting distance of this marker); A Streetcar Named Brightwood (about 400 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); Fort Stevens (approx. 0.2 miles away); School Days (approx. 0.2 miles away); a different marker also named Fort Stevens (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Brightwood.
More about this marker. A picture of Elizabeth Proctor Thomas appears at the upper right of the marker. Several photographs include “Children of Aqudath Achiam dramatize Chanukah on the Stanbury Masonic Temple stage in 1952.”; and an interior look of the temple with the caption “Masonic ceremonial rooms were found upstairs.”
A photograph of the Stansbury Masonic Temple appears at the top of the back of the marker. It has a caption of “The Stansbury Masonic Temple housed a post office when it first opened in 1920.” The lower left of the marker features a map of the Brightwood Heritage Trail and indicates the location of the marker.
Credits. This page was last revised on September 7, 2020. It was originally submitted on November 13, 2011, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 1,252 times since then and 62 times this year. Last updated on April 6, 2014, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on September 7, 2020, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. 4. submitted on May 19, 2013, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. 5. submitted on November 13, 2011, by Bill Coughlin of Woodland Park, New Jersey. 6, 7, 8. submitted on May 19, 2013, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.