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Most of the photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs, 20 to 200 megabytes in size) from the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) Many were digitized by LOC contractors using a Sinar studio back. They are adjusted by your webmaster for contrast and color in Photoshop before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here.

 
 
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VINTAGRAPH • WPA • WWII • A CHRISTMAS JOKE WITH A POINT TO IT

On the Street Where You Live: 1923

On the Street Where You Live: 1923

Washington, D.C., circa 1923. "Allied Asphalt Products Co., 3402 18th Street N.E." National Photo Company Collection glass negative. View full size.

 

Not my street, but around the corner

I live about four blocks from this house and walked down there to see what I could see about this place. There is indeed an alley behind this particular block, though not all blocks in our neighborhood have them. Also, if you look closely at the left side of this photo you can see another house behind the trees; I believe that house has been incorporated into the two storefront church now numbered as 3400/3402. (You can see it when viewed from the alley). I assume that the subject of this picture was demolished and replaced by the tan storefront and the little apartment walkup, I guess in the 1930s. Finally, I think the brick wall on the right side of this photo is the south wall of the dreary OOB "childcare center" that exists there today.

As a neighbor, I sure wish there were something else on this block now, either homes or viable storefronts. These buildings are all essentially abandoned, having been vacant or "under renovation" for most of the ten years I have been in the area. There are dozens of storefront churches around...I can think of four others within three blocks of this site.

My Shorpy Routine

When the day is full with not a lot of time I'll view the photos then scan the comments to look for any [Dave zingers] - until there's time to catch up on the full list of the comments later. A classic Dave bit today.

Ok, I'll bite...

From previous comments....

I realize it is your hometown, but enough of the D.C. photos already. Please. It's not a very attractive city and there is an entire world of historic photos out there - could we see some of those. Please.

[There are two things (at least) you seem not to be aware of! - Dave]

Dave, what "two things (at least)" are you referring to? I suppose the #1 reason is that one of the primary resources for the photos of this site is the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. Are you counting the two major contributing studios (Harris & Ewing and National Photo Co.) as two distinct reasons?

Additionally, in response to the Anonymous Tipster, I believe the architecture of D.C. is both special and intrinsically attractive - it reflects the monumental architecture one would associate with a Capitol city as well as the American vernacular architecture of the past two centuries.

No driveway

In the old days, neighbourhoods had these nifty things called back alleys. Most people parked their cars in detached garages that faced the alley. That way, if a car was left running or if a fire broke out residents wouldn't be in risk of their lives, and the street wouldn't look like a Parade of Garages. (Electric and other wires also ran down the back alley, and the city picked up garbage there.)

I'm not sure why I'm writing this in past tense, though, since I've never owned a house that didn't back onto an alley.

Built 1911

I am stunned to see the building permit notice from the Washington Post (see comment below). The builder-architect, C.M. Chaney, was my grandfather (mother's father). His full name was Conrad Marene Chaney, and he was a prominent housebuilder in Northeast Washington for many years. He is noted as one of the pioneers in bringing the bungalow-style house to the Distict. He passed away in 1938, a year before my mother was married, so I never knew him.

Sorry, Freddie

Miss Doolittle is not receiving visitors today. You are about 95 years early; we were expecting Mr. Shaw first.

Off-street parking

Rather than driveways, this area appears to have alleys.

In My Humble Opinion

I think the wall must have been the property line. Looking very close, I think there is also a driveway between the house and wall, although it is not very well maintained, and it is very narrow. Also it has a lot of grass and weeds in it. Have a Great Day!

Side of a building

That indeed is the sloping side of the building next door. Dave, DC is fine. Keep it up

Just around the corner

Just around the corner from
1804 Kearney Street N.E.
http://www.shorpy.com/node/5713?size=_original

DC Real Estate Records show
3400 - 3402 18TH ST NE
Owner Name: PURITY PENTACOSTAL DELIVERANCE
Mailing Address: 3406 18TH ST NE; WASHINGTON DC20018-2722
DC Real Estate Records do not list a 3404 18th St NE

Sears Home?

This looks very similar to a Sears home of 1908-1914.
http://www.searsarchives.com/homes/1908-1914.htm
Modern Home No. 159 has many of the same attributes as this beauty

Nice shutters

I was disgusted by the shutters on my own home--they had been added as an afterthought and were completely unnecessary. When the garage was tacked onto my house, the wall ended right beside a window, so the owners just put the window's other shutter on the garage wall, perpendicular to the window. So ugly. I thought to myself, the house was built in 1920! No way would they have done something so stupid then! But check out the shutter-work on this place. I guess I was wrong!

The "wall" and street tree

Two things...the small street tree in the old picture, it appears to be the same cultivar as the huge tree in the modern street view. Wonder if it is? Also, the wall, appears to be the small single story storefront seen in the modern street view as well.

Mighty oaks from little acorns grow

I wonder if the sapling in the original picture is the same as the grown up tree showing in the Google street view. It looks to be in about the same spot.

Wall

Is that a wall or the side of a building? If so, the building appears to still be there next to the driveway.

Street parking

Something seemed odd about this house and it finally clicked: it doesn't have a driveway!

Charming

Very charming house that is fit to illustrate the phrase "good old days". But, I don't like the curve of the pole on the left, and I wonder why the tall brick wall on the right?

Do NOT talk to the neighbors

That's a pretty formidable brick wall on the right. Assuming that there is just another house past it, I wonder what prompted someone to build such a thing.

That's the type of thing H.P. Lovecraft would have given a morbid reason for.

There are other cities in the US and World

Dave ~

I realize it is your hometown, but enough of the D.C. photos already. Please. It's not a very attractive city and there is an entire world of historic photos out there - could we see some of those. Please.

[There are two things (at least) you seem not to be aware of! - Dave]

And now ....

What a nice house

I wouldn't mind a house like that. Very attractive. Today, it appears that there's a church on that lot.

Built 1911

Washington Post, Sep 17, 1911

Building Permits

B.M. Artley, to erect two-story frame dwelling at 3402 Eighteenth street northeast, $1,375. C.M. Chaney, architect; R. Dows, contractor.

Wish I Lived There...

I would sit in a rocking chair on that front porch sipping iced tea (possibly strengthened with a little Black Jack) and sell Asphalt Products to passers-by.

 
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