Columbia Heights in Washington, District of Columbia — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
A Gathering Place for Washingtonians
—Meridian Hill Park, National Historic Landmark —
When tens of thousands of people flocked to Washington D.C. in the late 1930s and 40s for federal jobs created by the New Deal and World War II, government agencies created a series of "Starlight" concerts in the park. From 1941 to 1944, Washingtonians lined the cascades and reflecting pool on summer evenings to hear classical music, including a performance by the Von Trappe Family Singers.
When Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated in April 1968, Washington D. C. erupted in riots. Both the 14th Street business corridor north and east of the park and the U Street corridor south of the park were devastated. To help heal and unify the city, the "Summer in the Parks" concert series was created. The Inaugural performance was held at Meridian Hill Park, featuring Broadway and film star Pearl Bailey. Twenty-thousand people attended.
Since 1969, the park has unofficially been called "Malcolm X Park" by the local community. As the site of the memorial to President Buchanan, Meridian Hill cannot officially be named for another person.
Erected by National Park Service.
Marker series. National Historic Landmarks marker series.
Location. 38° 55.16′ N, 77° 2.176′ W. Marker is in Columbia Heights, District of Columbia, in Washington. Marker is at the intersection of 16th Street and W Street on 16th Street. Touch for map. The marker is one of three at the entrance to Meridian Hill Park at 16th Street and W Street in North West Washington. Marker is in this post office area: Washington DC 20009, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. James Buchanan (here, next to this marker); Mrs. Henderson's Legacy (within shouting distance of this marker); Buchanan (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Meridian Hill Park (about 500 feet away); Meridian Hill/Malcolm X Park (about 500 feet away); Pitts Motor Hotel (about 600 feet away); Saint Augustine Roman Catholic Church (about 700 feet away); The Fedora (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Columbia Heights.
Categories. • Entertainment • Politics •
Credits. This page was last revised on November 20, 2016. This page originally submitted on March 6, 2013, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. This page has been viewed 480 times since then and 31 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on March 6, 2013, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.