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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Buena Vista in Washington, District of Columbia — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

A Navy Town

An East-of-the-River View

 

—Anacostia HeritageTrail —

 
A Navy Town Marker image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, July 14, 2015
1. A Navy Town Marker
Inscription. Long before Metro opened a Green Line station here in 1991, the B&O Railroad's Alexandria Branch line ran a block behind you, along the river. The Washington & Anacostia Street Railway ran along Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue a block ahead. The railroads and the area's location on the river near the Washington Navy Yard brought industry here in the early 1900s.

Pittsburgh-based Firth-Stirling Steel opened the Washington Steel & Ordnance Co. just down river at Giesboro Point, now part of the military base. The plant made armor-piercing projectiles from 1907 until 1928, selling most of them to the Washington Navy Yard. Washington Steel's 300-acre campus replaced small farms and the Buena Vista resort, once popular among the area's many German immigrant farmers. At its peak during World War I (1914-1918), Washington Steel employed 1,600 men. These workers made a ready market for the housing and goods offered by local businessmen.

World War I transformed Anacostia. Just north of the plant, the Navy Department built the riverside Anacostia Naval Air Station. The Army Signal Corps Air Service installed Bolling Field and took over the old Washington Steel property in 1935. When the Navy acquired Bolling Field five years later, Anacostia became a true Navy town.

Pauline Munson Chapman grew up in Anacostia in the 1940s
"A Navy Town" Marker - at the Anacostia Metro Station image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, July 14, 2015
2. "A Navy Town" Marker - at the Anacostia Metro Station
and remembered waving to trainloads of sailors, who sometimes tossed candy from the windows. "Poplar Point was all Navy barracks," remembered Rev. Oliver Johnson, who lived nearby in the 1950s. On their way to school, he and his pals collected caps presumably dropped by inebriated sailors returning to their barracks from nearby taverns.
 
Erected 2015 by Cultural Tourism, DC. (Marker Number 1.)
 
Location. 38° 51.725′ N, 76° 59.673′ W. Marker is in Buena Vista, District of Columbia, in Washington. Marker is at the intersection of Howard Road, SE and Shannon Place, SE, on the right when traveling east on Howard Road, SE. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1101 Howard Rd, SE - Metro Green Line Rail Station, Washington DC 20020, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Barry Farm - Hillsdale (within shouting distance of this marker); Nichols Avenue Elementary School/Old Birney School Site (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Faith and Action (about 300 feet away); Birney School (about 400 feet away); A Museum for the Community (about 600
A Navy F9-C scout fighter plane attached to the dirigible MACON - out of NAS Lakehurst in the 1930s image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, July 14, 2015
3. A Navy F9-C scout fighter plane attached to the dirigible MACON - out of NAS Lakehurst in the 1930s
- above what is today's Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling [JBAB] where manned "lighter-than-air" vessels have long been deleted from aviation inventories, and even fixed-wing airplanes have been relocated to huge, modern facilities like Joint Base Andrews in suburban Maryland.
feet away); Campbell African Methodist Episcopal Church (approx. 0.2 miles away); Crossing Lines (approx. ¼ mile away); Hillsdale (approx. ¼ mile away).
 
Additional keywords. Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling [JBAB]; HMX-1
 
Categories. Air & SpaceMilitaryRailroads & StreetcarsWaterways & Vessels
 
Enterprise Hall: Headquarters of the Naval Support Activity, Anacostia Detachment - image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, July 15, 2015
4. Enterprise Hall: Headquarters of the Naval Support Activity, Anacostia Detachment -
Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling [JBAB]
Marine Helicopter Squadron One [HMX1] image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, July 15, 2015
5. Marine Helicopter Squadron One [HMX1]
- units in flight over JBAB from the Naval Support Facility heliport - the only such military aviation activity in Washington, DC - among other things, providing secure transportation for the President and other high level dignitaries.
"Display Ship" <i>BARRY</i> [formerly, the Cold War-Vietnam Era destroyer "DD-733"]] image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, September 23, 2015
6. "Display Ship" BARRY [formerly, the Cold War-Vietnam Era destroyer "DD-733"]]
- at her moorings off the river walk at the Washington Navy Yard, with the Anacostia hills in view to the northeast.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on March 4, 2017. This page originally submitted on September 13, 2015, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. This page has been viewed 282 times since then and 63 times this year. Last updated on September 17, 2015, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. Photos:   1. submitted on September 14, 2015, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.   2. submitted on September 15, 2015, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.   3. submitted on September 17, 2015, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.   4, 5. submitted on September 19, 2015, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.   6. submitted on September 26, 2015, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
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