According to the 1897 Report of [the] Commissioners of [the] District of Columbia there were:
These areas are villages as they are outside of the Old City boundaries (north of what is currently Florida Ave). This is how you remember what is Shaw and what isn’t. These “villages” are outside of the Old City. Houses outside the borders are more likely to have these things we call yards and their own 4 walls.
Yes, it seems I’m on a history bent this week. What does this have to do with Shaw and gentrification. Shaw…. I’ll talk about Shaw later, maybe put up some tax maps from 1880. On gentrification, well I like poking around and looking at the demographic data and seeing that the city is ever changing. Gentrification around here is a kind of change with the aspect of race thrown in.
The big census project I have been working on is on hold until after September. I want to see if Shaw, or at least the TC changed from predominately white to black quickly or slowly, and how.
2 thoughts on “1897 LeDroit Park & Eckington”
My guess is that Shaw attracted a mixed bag of residents of all races and classes up until WWI, when the District boomed. But at the same time that the black population in the neighborhood started increasing gradually immediately following the Civil War, when Africa-American men in the city were given the right to vote. Good records to look for to document some of the later population shifts would be bank and real estate company records that chart red-lining practices and enforced segregation. Howard University’s influence to the north in Ledroit Park is not insignificant, neither is the change in the character of the neighborhood immediately surrounding Griffith Stadium after it was built in 1919–and it’s later demolition in the 60s. I’ve been told that many middle- and upper-class African-American families left the LeDroit Park and Shaw areas for the Gold Coast of 16th St. and the MD suburbs after the Supreme Court abolished segregated housing in 1948. It would be interesting to follow a sampling of residents to see if this was indeed the case and how prevalent it was.
I’m using census records because I want to know people’s business. It will be a good while before I can look at the 1960s census (if ’48 allowed people to move where ever, the 1950 census would be too soon). The 1930 census is available now and that is where I noticed on the 1700 blk of NJ Ave that in 1920 it was 100% white. In 1930 100% black. I’m very location specific. Population changes could occur because new housing popped up, segregated areas got more concentrated, or what have you.
The TC was a sort of mixed neighborhood with white streets and blocks and black streets and blocks.
There were a number of AfAms in the Freedmen’s Village in Alexandria, VA which annoyingly is referred to like it is a part of DC. Correct me but didn’t Alex. & Arl. break off from DC before the Civil War?
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