Slavery was legal in Washington DC until 1862, when Abraham Lincoln signed the Compensated Emancipation Act. Through it, we can learn a great deal about those people held in bondage in what would become Brookland.
When the US Army built a ring of earthen forts around the city at the start of the Civil War, it upended the lives of many landowners. Florist Henry Douglass was one of them.
A panoramic photograph of the Brookland neighborhood from 1910 reveals a number of fascinating details.
Catholic University professor Roy Deferrari lived in Brookland for four decades, and made profound changes at the University, promoting racial equity and women’s rights.
Loïs Mailou Jones, acclaimed artist and professor of design and watercolor at Howard University, lived in Brookland, where she set up the “Little Paris Studio,” to work with artists of color.
After the Civil War, the fortifications ringing the city had no further purpose and most were soon built over. Fort Bunker Hill had a different future.
Many streams and brooks once ran through Brookland. They were piped underground as the neighborhood grew. Maps show where they once ran.
Orville Babcock, Civil War General and close friend of President Grant, once owned a small farm in the area. He was also the root of a major scandal in the Grant Administration.
An 1861 photograph from the Civil War supposedly showed a view of Fort Slocum. Research shows it actually depicts Fort Bunker Hill.
A personal account of the tension and anguish in Washington DC in the days after Martin Luther King’s assassination.