So William Cullom Bates (1856-1937) owned Square 551 lot 857 and at one time the confusing lot that sat on old lots 7 & 8. He and his wife Linnie/Melinda Bell Martin Bates (1859-1935) sold that to Novella F. Gibson. I can’t really tell where lot 857 is but a 1940 deed, selling the property, used to be 213 Q St NW. But looking at a map, a property sitting on 7 & 8 is 215 Q St NW.
In 1935, before they both died, they lived at 5712 Colorado Ave NW. In 1930 Mr. Bates was listed as retired but before that he was a salesman. Nothing special. If I was more sure about the address, I would take a guess of what he was doing with the property, as square 551 had commercial elements.
I think I have a relative with the name “Novella”, so it is a very interesting name. Anywho, Novella F. Gibson owned lot 856 on Square 551, and I cannot find it for the life of me. According to the 1933-1934 General Assessment, lot 856 was a strip of land with some structure on it. In the land records she is Novella and Novalla and she owned lots 7, 8, and 189. With low numbers like 7 & 8 those are probably ‘old’ lot numbers that were divided into smaller lots of which she owned one or more.
Once again, I really like the Recorder of Deed Records. In 1933-1934 Charles M. Nash owned lot 853 on Square 551. But Charles Nash is a common enough name so I am thankful in a 1947 Deed his wife Doris H. Nash (1905-1975) is named when they sold the property to a Ms. Rosi H. Scott.
I also discovered he owned another lot on Square 551, lot 848 (144 R St NW).
Charles Matthews Nash Sr (1896-1967) was a native Washingtonian, He received a law degree from Georgetown Law School in 1917. The family lived in the Chevy Chase/ Bethesda/ Silver Spring area from 1930 onward. So never a resident of Truxton Circle.
In 1938 it appears that his mother Lucy Belle Matthews Nash (1860-1938) granted the lot to him. But there was some question and a year later there is a judgement where Pauline Needle was the plaintiff and Nash was the defendant. In the final judgement various people, including Nash’s wife, his brother Raymond Nash and Lillard B. Fields (from the Edward Coleman post) were ordered to quitclaim various DC properties to Charles M. Nash. Apparently Ms. Needle had a judgement lien. Anyway, there were a lot of lawyers involved. Charles had a lawyer. Lillard Fields had a lawyer. A bunch of other people had lawyers, and of course, Pauline Needles had a lawyer. Lawyers for everybody! Continue reading Property Owners of Truxton Circle- Charles M. Nash
Okay this is a very quick one. In the 1933-1934 General Assessment Edward D. Coleman (1901-1942) was listed as the owner of Square 551 lot 852. He and his wife Florence sold the lot in 1936 to Lillard (that’s an interesting name) Fields. This was another Reeves Alley property so I can’t really get a good address.
In the 1940 census Edward D. Coleman was a white 38 year old self-employed Real Estate Agent from Illinois. He lived at 1634 Monroe St NE with is wife and their 3 minor children.
The problem with the Census is that sometimes the street isn’t clear. For a moment I thought the Martz family lived in Truxton Circle on R Street. However, looking at adjoining pages I figured out what Ancestry.com decided was a R in R St was actually K. The other thing was that I found the owner of Square 0551 lot 0851 (a wood structure in Reeves Alley) in the 1933-34 General Assessment was a family tree that did not know he had children.
Looking at the land records Robert William Martz bought the property, listed as old lot 19 in 1932 from John W. Hile. Then in 1935 he died in Clarendon, VA at the age of 46. His widow, Ethel Marie Lewis Martz (1895-1977) appears to have sold the property in 1942 to Paul J. Bower, who then sold the property to Embassy Dairy in 1947.
Square 551 (bounded by R, Florida, 1st, Q and 3rd Streets) was a mix of residential and commercial properties. In the 1930s Robert W. Martz was a coal and ice man running his own business. Since this property was in Reeves Alley as far as I can tell this could have been used for commercial reasons related to his business.
He did live at times in Washington, DC but not in Truxton or the Shaw areas.
I mentioned I wish I could amend or add to the family tree that left the Martz’ childless. Robert Martz (1889-1935) was survived by 3 children at the time of his death, Robert Jr. (1918-1999), Marie Ethel (later Marie Graham 1920-1990), and Catherine Elizabeth (later Thorpe, 1922-2009).
Next on the list, as I go down it, is Sq. 551 and lot 850. Sigh, lot 850 is part of old lot 19, so this is going to be confusing. I’m just going to start with the land records and see where that takes me.
Searching for just lot 850, only two documents appear. The first is from 1947 between a Charles F. Wilson, trustee in Civil Action case file 38-115, and Embassy Dairy. The other is in 1948 for an easement/ right of way between the DC government and the Office of the Surveyor.
My first question with this was, is Carrie Walker a man or woman. I need to know because it makes the searching in Ancestry easier. The property records has Carrie G. Walker, the daughter getting the land from Carrie Walker. The 1920 census, sigh, has Carrie Walker as the female head and Carrie G. Walker as the wife.
This is a misstatement. A few fields over, the senior Carrie is listed as a widow and the junior Carrie as single. Looking at the 1900 and 1910 Census shows John Walker as the male head, Carrie senior as the wife and Carrie G. junior as the daughter. Okay, a reminder that the Census screws things up time to time.
Also from the census, I see the Walkers are African American resident owners (mullato/negro) living on R St NW. Later I could re-do this as Black Homeowners of Truxton Circle. They were at 216 R St NW in 1900 and Mr. Walker was the owner. In the later 1910 and 1920, the Walker family lived at 146 R St NW, square and lot 0551-0847. Did the address change or did they move? No idea.
The earliest land record I can see is from 1924 between Carrie G. Walker (the younger) and Needham C. Turnage to borrow $280.00 with 146 R NW as security. Then there are a series of loans she takes out using the property as collateral. So loan #1- 1924 Needham Turnage $280.00. Released (paid) 1938. #2-1926, Kahn and Coleman/ Leo Kahn & E. Coleman, $375.00. Released 1927. #3- 1936, James B. Evans & Claude W. Owen, $372.00. Released 1938. #4- 1938, Washington Loan and Trust Company, $800.00. Released 1950. In 1951, she sells the land to Lawrence C. and Rosa A. Diggs.
Side note, a Carrie E. Walker buys 112 Florida Avenue NW (SSI: 0551-0178) in April 1934 from William H. Coates and Mamie D. Coates. A search for Carrie E. Walker in Ancestry is not particularly fruitful. The name does not change for the brief moment Carrie E. owns it, as she sells it 2 months later in June to Mary E. Baker.
Let’s call this an SOP, standard operating procedure, for what I’m doing. And what am I doing? I’m doing some neighborhood history, but more along the lines of neighborhood historical fact gathering. History is about a story to be told. The problem is that I get another piece of information and it kinda throws a monkey wrench into the narrative. Here I gather the info, then try to tell a tale.
So in our last entry regarding the Brungers there was the issue of Sq. 551 Lot 17, which was also lots 844 and 845. Sometimes, I imagine that I will make a corresponding spreadsheet of addresses by also linking them to their SSL (square and lot) numbers, but then I have to deal with this problem of lot numbers changing. It happens now too with condos. The owner I’m looking at today is Michael Joseph McInerney Sr., owner of lot 845, which appears to be 208 R St NW. And for those of you just joining in this series, this house no longer exists.
I’ve jumped around and I think I have all the multi-lot owners and the surnames that appear several times. Now we come to William C. and Annie C. Brunger, owners of lot 844 on Square 551, 210 R Street NW.
Since the Ancestry search (available via the awesome DC Public Library) gave me the right info straight out of the gate, I’ll start there first. Ancestry has these family tree things and the Brungers show up in the Reynolds-Smith family tree. The English born carpenter (later foreman), William Charles Brunger (1865- 1928) was married to Annie Caroline Wright (1865-1926), and they had 3 children (Berton William Brunger was born 1889 in DC – died in 1970 in FL; Lillian R Brunger – Leonberger 1893–1967 – also in FL; and Charles A Brunger 1894–1921). In his will he left his daughter Lillian (aka Mrs. F.J. Leonberger) 11 Kennedy Street NE. Berton was bequeathed 210 R St NW, in Truxton Circle. His son Charles was already dead and apparently childless, so nothing for him.
The 1900 Census has the Brunger family living on Sq. 551, but not at 210 R St NW. They are at 1637 3rd St NW in 1910 and 1920. I have discovered they are not on the TruxtonCircle.org Excel sheet for 1900. According to a city directory he lived at 11 Kennedy Street NE in 1926.