Crestwood: 300 Acres, 300 Years by David Swerdloff


Crestwood: 300 Acres, 300 Years is the story of a Northwest Washington, D.C. neighborhood and its uncommon connections with the history of the Nation’s Capital. Using more than 200 photographs, maps, documents and news articles, the 130-page book explores a community that has had recognizable borders ever since the first survey of an estate called Argyle Cowall and Lorn in 1720. We meet a wide variety of people who traveled to or through the area we now call Crestwood—including Native American tool makers, Civil War soldiers, horse racing fans, city dwellers looking for an outing “in the country” and U.S. presidents from Abraham Lincoln to Teddy Roosevelt. The book uncovers links between Crestwood and St. Elizabeths hospital, the building of the U.S. Capitol, Russian diplomacy, the escape attempt by D.C. slaves aboard The Pearl, the first mass protest march on Washington and four Supreme Court decisions. Even readers who may not be able to locate Crestwood on a map (between16th Street and Rock Creek Park from Piney Branch to Carter Barron) will gain insights into how D.C. developed beyond its central core and learn to recognize historical clues hidden in plain sight in a community’s streets, alleyways, structures and landscapes.

David Swerdloff is a native Washingtonian who became involved in Crestwood’s present and past after he and his wife Lorraine moved to the neighborhood in 1985. He is the historian and former president of the Crestwood Citizens Association. David has been an award-winning journalist at the Voice of America. His 40+ years in broadcasting also include decades of commercial radio experience in Washington, D.C. as a news anchor, morning show personality and disc jockey.

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