Have you ever wondered what the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia (DMV) area looked like from the late 19th century to the mid 20th century? Thanks to the Bureau of Public Roads role in documenting road constructions, highways, building structures, etc., you are in luck.
Record Group 30: Historical Photograph Files, 1896-1963 (30-N) contains photographs documenting these activities. Subjects include vehicles, traffic, highways structures, maps, tourist cabins and motels, car washes, shopping centers, bus terminals, and parking garages. The photographs selected for this post document buildings, bridges, streets, and highways in different areas of the DMV. Areas include Rock Creek Park, Anacostia, Pennsylvania Avenue, DuPont Circle (DC); Bethesda-Chevy Chase, Laurel, Silver Spring, Hyattsville, Rockville (MD); and Falls Church, Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfax (VA).
Please note, if the caption on the mount does not list the specific date, the last two digits of the year taken are included as part of the numbering system for photographs after 1930.
Connecticut Avenue bridge (NAID 169142884, 30-N-36-597-A) Lincoln Memorial Bridge over the Potomac River (NAID 169142926, 30-N-38-1585-A) Arlington Memorial Bridge across the Potomac River (NAID 169142956, 30-N-43-2435) Rock Creek Park, Boulder Bridge (NAID 169142798, 30-N-348) Anacostia River Bridge (NAID 169143142, 30-N-50-76) 14th Street Highway Bridge (NAID 169143198, 30-N-53-806) 23rd Street and Virginia Avenue underpass (NAID 169146362, 30-N-49-1342) Benning Road Interchange (NAID 169146438, 30-N-53-2335) F Street between 13th & 14th Street (NAID 169152431, 30-N-31-231) Pennsylvania Avenue NW (NAID 169152439, 30-N-35-1557) Looking west on Constitution Avenue across 14th Street (NAID 169152465, 30-N-40-2751-B) Maine Avenue SW near 12th Street (NAID 169152565, 30-N-47-1663-A) Maryland Ave NE (NAID 169152579, 30-N-47-1671) K Street NW looking east from 16th Street (NAID 169152603, 30-N-47-2168) Vermont and K Street NW (NAID 169152681, 30-N-49-1656-A) 14th & Pennsylvania Avenue (NAID 169152433, 30-N-31478) 15th & Pennsylvania Avenue (NAID 169152435, 30-N-31489) 5th and G Streets, Northwest, Washington, DC (NAID 205739252, 30-N-41-4477) Underpass at Scott Circle and 16th Street, Northwest, Washington, DC (NAID 205739260, 30-N-42-1353) Dupont Circle, Looking North (NAID 205739304, 30-N-46-2299) Maryland
Chesapeake Bay Bridge (NAID 169137202, 30-N-51-169) Grade Separation, Georgia Avenue Underpass, Silver Spring, Maryland (NAID 169137730, 30-N-48-852-D) Left-turn storage lane on Wisconsin Avenue in Bethesda-Chevy Chase, Maryland (30-N-53-1368) Steal-beamed bridge over the Patuxent River at Laurel, Maryland (NAID 169143460, 30-N-53-962) Toll bridge, Shepardstown, Maryland (NAID 169145122, 30-N-32725) New B&O underpass in Silver Spring, Maryland (NAID 169146798, 30-N-49-340) Railroad overpass over Maryland State Route 176 near Glen Burnie, Maryland (NAID 169146840, 30-N-50-6005) Traffic on the Washington-Baltimore Pike in Maryland (NAID 169153473, 30-N-31-812) East West Highway – Montgomery County, Maryland (NAID 169153481, 30-N-37-2891) Governor Ritchie Highway connecting Baltimore and Annapolis (NAID 169153528, 30-N-41-2579) U.S. Route 1, Maryland, between Riverdale and University Park, looking north (NAID 169153658, 30-N-53-1182) Looking north along US 301, near Upper Marlboro, Maryland (NAID 169153684, 30-N-53-2496) U.S. Route 1, Hyattsville, Maryland (NAID 169153728, 30-N-39-4284) Harford Road, Baltimore (NAID 169153822, 30-N-48-418-B) View of East-West Highway (NAID 169153878, 30-N-53-896) Maryland State Route 5 (NAID 169153886, 30-N-989) Viers Mill Road (NAID 169153888, 30-N-53-1061) Montgomery Avenue in Rockville, Maryland (NAID 169153890, 30-N-53-1076) Military Highway and Marlboro Pike, Maryland (NAID 205738842, 30-N-47-570) Road Fork in Maryland (NAID 205738788, 30-N-26318) South elevation of Suitland-Silver Hill Road bridge (NAID 205741242, 30-N-46-295) U.S. Route 50 (NAID 169135643, 30-N-38-4866-B)
Widening of U.S. 211 near Falls Church, Virginia (NAID 169137874, 30-N-37-2603) Arlington County, Virginia – Bus Turnout (NAID 169142450, 30-N-45-2231) Bus turnout on Mount Vernon Memorial Highway about 1/2 mile north of Alexandria, Virginia (NAID 169142624, 30-N-53-549) Arlington Memorial Bridge (NAID 169143953, 30-N-45-2244) View of Washington, DC from Arlington Ridge Road, Virginia (NAID 169144031, 30-N-50-5438) Overpass at Lee Boulevard and Washington Street, Arlington, Virginia (NAID 169146488, 30-N-47-418) Duke Street Overpass on Shirley Highway, Virginia (NAID 169146608, 30-N-52-1263) Tunnel at Mary’s Rock, Shenandoah National Park (NAID 169147421, 30-N-39-3925) View of Blue Ridge Parkway (NAID 205732963, 30-N-40-1825-B) U.S. Route 1 south of Alexandria (NAID 205733255, 30-N-39-4275-A) U.S. Route 1, seven miles south of Petersburg, Virginia (NAID 205733299, 30-N-52-808) U.S. 50 – a four-lane divided highway about 500 yards west of Seven Corners, Falls Church, Virginia (NAID 205733311, 30-N-53-1935) Toll gate in Amherst County, Virginia near Lynchburg (NAID 205733335, 30-N-18019) Washington Boulevard and N. Glebe Road, Arlington County, Virginia (NAID 205738814, 30-N-43-2458) Looking along Fairfax Drive at Intersection with Lee Highway, East Falls Church, Virginia (NAID 205738900, 30-N-49-1140) Sky Line Drive near Waynesboro, Virginia (NAID 205741484, 30-N-39-2861-B) Washington Street – looking south from Oronoco Street, in Alexandria, Virginia (NAID 135804947, 30-N-36472) King’s Highway near U.S. Route 1 at rear of Mount Bridge near Mount Vernon (NAID 135804985, 30-N-36489) Alexandria Academy, the first Free School in Alexandria, Virginia (NAID 135805027, 30-N-36510) At Franklin Street, in Alexandria, Virginia (NAID 135805047, 30-N-366786A)
The photographs in this series have been digitized and made available via our online catalog. Some of the photographs are from commercial sources that may be under copyright. However, the selected ones for this post do not have any known copyright restrictions.
2 thoughts on “Historical Roads and Buildings in the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia”
Wow. I’m a NoVA-dweller and found this fascinating. Thank-you.
Thanks, Alexis. I love the photo of the Bay Bridge being constructed.
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