Black Home Owners of Truxton Circle: Miles C. Maxfield- 1229 1st St NW

Miles C. Maxfield was born in 1851 in Hanover County, VA to Harriett Moore and Frank Maxfield. After his father died in 1868, he moved to Washington, DC working as a porter in a store. In November 1873 he married Eliza/ Elizabeth Stewart. The 1900 census has the Maxfield family, Miles, Eliza and daughter Gonevia, living at 1237 1st St NW. According to the 1902-1903 General Assessment, Miles owned lot 800 on Square 618.

Source: uploaded by elehcim61

Looking at a 1919 map, 1237 is at the corner of N and 1st St NW. It is on the same lot as 1229 1st St, but a different building.

The 1910 census has the three Maxflieds at 1229 1st St NW. In 1909 he was working as a skilled laborer at the Bureau of Engraving and Printing making $939 a year. That’s pretty decent money for the time. He was also a public speaker, with his engagements at Black churches and other activities reported in the Washington Bee. I should note his daughter Gonevia authored a few society articles for the Bee.

Eliza passed away on September 30, 1918, leaving Miles as a widower. In the 1920 census he is all alone at 1229 1st St NW. After years of working as a clerk and skilled laborer he was listed as a watchman. By the 1920 census, his daughter had married Dr. Samuel M. Pierre living at 2124 L St NW with his children.

When Miles died on January 16, 1936 at the Casualty Hospital, officers and other lodge members of Rising Sun Lodge No. 1365 attended his funeral at the Nineteenth Street Baptist Church.  His remaining heir, Gonevia did not immediately sell. The land records reveal that he owned the house free and clear. She eventually sold the property in 1965.