While I was away this weekend, mourning the death of my grandma, the whole what’s the friggin name of the neighborhood blew up. As far as I’ve been able to grasp it, a vocal party in the Bates Area that is opposed to the name Truxton Circle penned a few letters to various city officials expressing their opposition to the name. However, one of those letters was to DDOT requesting “an immediate stay on the grant application for a Truxton Circle Banner pending further review.” Considering that city grant money may be harder to come by in the future, and that it is easier to get grants once you’ve gotten one, our little disagreement about the name of the neighborhood has gone too far.
I had not seen the letter that started it when I had seen the Truxton Circle dot org’s Daily (somewhat weekly-ish) dispatch in my inbox on my cell phone. I read the dispatcher’s letter, which expressed anger and irritation, leaving me to wonder WTF? It wasn’t until Sunday night when I read the offending letter and got a fuller account from the co-founder of TruxtonCircle.Org. Dang.
I respect the right of my fellow neighbors to disagree and go into the public sphere to express said disagreement. Regarding the name and history of the neighborhood, I welcome any research that others bring forth. The problems in the offending letter were a few statements and one poor citation. Let’s review:
Specifically, the Hanover project grant states that the Hanover neighborhood is “bounded by P Street NW, North Capitol Street, New York Avenue NW and 1st Street NW”. This is inaccurate. According to the Shaw School Urban Renewal Plan, the historic borders of the Hanover Street are limited to Hanover Street.
I haven’t seen anything in the SSURP defining smaller areas, but then again, I haven’t seen the SSURP in its fullness. But the borders cited by the Hanover people are the same borders they’ve been citing for the last 5-6 years as their section of the TC, as opposed to the Bates Area. I’d hope that if we went hunting for grant money for just BACA it would not be limited to Bates Street and denied to Q, R, 4th, 3rd, 1st and North Cap.
Therefore, the grant applicant’s request for a Truxton Circle banner on 1st NW is inaccurate. According to the text “Washington DC, Past and Future ” the former Truxton Circle was located at the 1600 block of North Capitol Street NE, not in Old City, Bates Shaw East community. Additionally, there was not and is not a neighborhood called Truxton Circle. It was a landmark, not a neighborhood.
I already did the when the TC was a neighborhood and not a landmark or a post office in another post. And I can’t find Washington DC, Past and Future in Amazon or Half, nor is an author cited. I did a Google search and came up with nothing, which leads me to think this might be an article, and if that is so citing the journal would be nice.
There was some other stuff, but to go over them would be nitpicky. We’re all human and prone to error. One of the undersigned in the counter grant letter had nicely pointed out a typographical error on my main site. I am thankful for that correction and in the same spirit of neighborliness, while having differing opinions, I suggest that in this public sphere argument, stronger citations and proof be brought forth. Meaning, if you are going to cite a source if it is a book or article cite the title and author and journal if applicable. If it is an oral history, interviewee, interviewer, date and repository where the interview is housed. And if anyone has a question about any of the sources I cite or use when asserting a statement as fact contact me if you feel that my bibliography or citations are incomplete. The idea is to let you the reader and member of the public review the research for yourself (should you decide to drag yourself to the MLK or the historical society’s library) and decide.