Black Home Owners of Truxton Circle: Ernest Lomax- 1627 NJ Ave NW

The census sometimes steers you wrong. This is the series where I look at the 1920 census for African American home owners in the Truxton Circle neighborhood. The census said he lived at 1653 New Jersey Avenue NW, but when I looked at the land records, no Lomax. Thankfully, I can search by name.

photo of property

In the name search for Mr. Ernest E. Lomax, I discovered he owned his home at 1627 NJ Ave NW (SSL: 0509E 0013), as well as 1726 Montello Ave NE (SSL: 4053 0017), 1110? 1st St NW (0557 0035- currently a greenspace), 409 H St NW (SSL:0517 0803), and lots somewhere in NE DC close to Eastern Ave and Hunt Pl NE (SSL: 5204 0020).

In 1910 Ernest and his son Herbert Lomax lived at 211 G St NW, without any other family there. Ernest was a widowed tinner at the time but later became a plumber. According to the 1919 city directory the family was at 1627 New Jersey Ave NW. There Ernest was a plumber working for Swann & Lomax, living with his new and younger wife Mamie, and a family of in-laws the Downings. In 1930 the Downings and Lomax remained at 1627 NJ.

The available land records start around 1921 and there are a number of trusts and releases between 1922 and 1937 between Ernest Lomax and the Washington Loan and Trust Company. In 1941 Lomaxs transferred the property to Phoebe E. Tyrrell, who later in 1946 transferred the property back to Mamie M. Lomax, and her male relatives, Edward H. , Elmer H. and Leon E. Downing. In another 1946 deed, we are told Mamie was a widow and Ernest had died.

In 1960, Elmer H. Downing sold the property to Sidney and Jean Blanken. In that deed, it’s revealed that Edward Downing died May 27, 1960 and Mamie Lomax died October 18, 1949.

A 1949 deed from his H St property gave a number of death dates. The widow of Herbert Lomax, Gertrude, sold the property to Minnie Shapiro. Herbert Lomax died January 25, 1949. Ernest’s first wife and Herbert’s mother, Louise, died November 21, 1909. Ernest Lomax died April 17, 1941.

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