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Our holdings include hundreds of glass and film negatives/transparencies that we've scanned ourselves; in addition, many other photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs) in the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) They are adjusted, restored and reworked by your webmaster in accordance with his aesthetic sensibilities before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here. All of these images (including "derivative works") are protected by copyright laws of the United States and other jurisdictions and may not be sold, reproduced or otherwise used for commercial purposes without permission.

© 2018 SHORPY INC.

[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Blair House: 1920

Blair House: 1920

Washington, D.C., circa 1920. "7221 Blair Road." Someone's at the door. National Photo Company Collection glass negative. View full size.

On Shorpy:
Today's Top 5

We Love Our Foursquare!

We live in the historic district of Hyattsville, Maryland; adjacent to Takoma Park. We're a couple of miles inside the Washington, DC, Beltway and a couple of miles from the District line.

There are many of these American foursquare homes in this district. Our home is one of a row of five Sears kit homes on this side of our street built in 1926. The Fullerton model sold then, delivered in two railroad cars, for $2,243. They're going for $250K and above now, depending on condition and upgrades.

Interestingly enough, the story is that in another one of these foursquare homes two blocks from our house, Jim Henson lived when he was attending nearby Northwestern High School. He created his first Muppets for the local Wilkins Coffee company's TV commercials while living there. You can find some of those commercials on YouTube.

Not Near Walter Reed Any More

With the coming of BRAC, the Walter Reed Army Hospital was merged with the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, MD. Walter Reed Army Hospital was closed and the old Walter Reed site in D.C. will be redeveloped.

Also, concerning the date in Zillow, if D.C. tax records are like those in nearby Montgomery County, Maryland, the built dates on properties built in the 1930s and before are often wildly inaccurate. It is not unusual to see newspaper ads for house complete with photos years before the tax records say the houses were built. In other cases tax records have build dates years before the subdivisions were established.

Near Walter Reed Army Hospital

Just a very few blocks' walk to the Walter Reed Army Hospital. That must increase the value of houses in the neighborhood.

Not all changes are good

It's too bad that the sweeping sidewalk is gone, and shame on whomever replaced the twin single-hung windows in the dormer with a single horizontal sliding window.

Owner leaving city.

From June 13, 1920, edition of The Washington Times.

Takoma Park
7221 Blair Road
Price reduced $2000
Immediate possession

Owner leaving city. Will sell this beautiful home at a sacrifice in order to make a quick sale. House contains 8 rooms, sleeping porch, breakfast porch and attractive bathroom; entire house is screened including the sleeping porch; hardwood floors; hot-water heat; electric lights; awnings; garage harmonizing with house.

And unfortunately, when you bring up this page from archives, you also see real estate listings for "coloreds" :(


Spacious front lawn with concrete walkway replaced with concave gravel driveway populated with weeds here and there. Improvement? Don't think so.

This house is for sale

The house is for sale, and the negative's mold makes it look like the interior hasn't been dusted for years, there is snow or huge pollen blowing about, and an eerie glow hovers above.

It's gonna be a hard sale!

American Icon

It's a foursquare!

Still There!

With a few changes, but still very recognizable.

1925 or later

On Zillow it states that the year built is 1925.

Bedrooms: 4 beds
Bathrooms: 2 baths
Single Family: 2,347 sq ft
Lot: 16,176 sq ft
Year Built: 1925
Heating Type: Forced air

Old, Simple & Effective

My grandparents had the same cloth awnings on the windows, and over the porch. You cranked them up and down by hand with a long metal pole. It was amazing how much cooler the porch got when the awning was down.

And it's for sale, too

It's a small realtors' "for sale" sign to be sure. They probably didn't want to bring too much attention or offend the neighbors.

Wonder what the sale price was in 1920 for this "ample two-story home, good windows (some with screens) and cross-ventilation, breezy shaded front porch, mature plantings, nice lawn and in friendly neighborhood close to paved road."

SHORPY HISTORICAL PHOTO ARCHIVE | History in HD is a vintage photo archive featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1960s. (Available as fine-art prints from the Shorpy Archive.) The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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