First Posted: Aug 4, 2012
Jan 20, 2020

Kalorama/Washington, DC

The Kalorama area within the Northwest Quadrangle of Washington, D.C., includes two adjacent, quite affluent historical residential neighborhoods, Kalorama Triangle and Sheridan-Kalorama. The area is accessible from the Dupont Circle and Woodley Park Metro stations, as well as various bus lines. Kalorama Triangle is bordered by Connecticut Avenue, Columbia Road, Calvert Street, and Rock Creek Park. Sheridan-Kalorama is immediately southwest, located between Connecticut Avenue, Rock Creek Park, Massachusetts Avenue, and Florida Avenue.

The chief distinction between the two neighborhoods lies in the more urban character of Kalorama Triangle, and the more suburban feel to Sheridan-Kalorama. The latter is notably the most affluent neighborhood in Washington, while the Triangle is more comparable with Dupont Circle and Woodley Park in being populated primarily by Washington's large upper middle class. Both the Kalorama Triangle and Kalorama-Sheridan are noted for their park-like settings, large single-family homes, spacious and elegant pre-war condominiums and coops, and prestige as desirable addresses within the city limits of Washington, D.C.

History of Two Neighborhoods

Image; Wikipedia Commons/AgnosticPreachersKid
Edward Lind Morse Studio located at 2133 R Street NW
"The Edward Lind Morse Studio located at 2133 R Street, NW in the Sheridan-Kalorama neighborhood of Washington, D.C. Designed by architects Hornblower & Marshall in 1902, the Arts and Crafts style house was originally an artist's studio used by Edward Lind Morse, the youngest son of inventor and artist Samuel F. B. Morse. The studio was converted into a residence in 1910, and currently serves as the Delphi Film Foundation headquarters. The building is a contributing property to the Sheridan-Kalorama Historic District...." Hornblower & Marshall, Architects, 1902

The Kalorama area was primarily rural until the close of the 19th century, lying northwest of the original limits of Washington City from L'Enfant's original plan. In 1795, Gustavus Scott, a commissioner for the District of Columbia purchased the property, which had been a portion of Anthony Holmead's "Widows Mite" holdings. He constructed a large, classically styled house at 23rd and S Streets, which he named Belair. In 1807, the noted poet Joel Barlow bought the property and renamed it "Kalorama," which translates from Greek as "fine view." Barlow lived in the home until shortly before his death in 1812. Barlow commissioned White House architect Benjamin Latrobe to enlarge the house and elevate its design. Kalorama (the residence) was destroyed by a fire during the American Civil War while it was used as a Union hospital. The residence was rebuilt and returned to a single-family home until 1887, when it was leveled by the District of Columbia government for the extension of S Street NW.

In the early 1880s, the Kalorama area, being located beyond Boundary Street (now Florida Avenue) and thus outside the city limits, which had hithero remained primarily undeveloped, began to be subdivided for urban development. In 1893 Congress ordered L'Enfant's design of the city of Washington extended outward to include the rest of the District. Existing developments were exempted, which is why Kalorama is one of the few portions of D.C. that does not comply with the city's grid system for streets. Two high bridges over the deep gorge of Rock Creek became important to the development of both sides of Kalorama in this period, the Calvert Street bridge (since replaced by the Duke Ellington Bridge), built in 1891, and the Taft Bridge (on Connecticut Avenue), built in 1907.

The Westmoreland, located at 2122 California Street NW, was built in 1906. The building originally opened as a rental property in 1906 and was converted to a co-op in 1948. The building was designed by architects Edgar S. Kennedy and Harry Blake in 1905.

Sheradon-Kalorama Historic District/NPS Roughly bounded by Connecticut Ave., NW and Florida Ave., NW on the east; P St., NW on the south; and Rock Creek Park on the west and north. All the buildings listed above are private and not open to the public unless noted. Metro stop: Dupont Circle.

...This distinctive area, a verdant residential enclave nestled in the midst of the city, contains buildings erected between 1890 and 1988. Individually, the neighborhood's buildings are among the most distinguished residential examples of late 19th and early 20th century revival style architecture in the United States. Major streets and minor roads alike hold naturally significant buildings by some of the country's most celebrated architects juxtaposed with the urbane work of accomplished urban designers.

The earliest urban architecture in this area dates to the Victorian Period. The Queen Anne and Romanesque Revival once dominated the neighborhood. Also, examples of the English Arts and Crafts can be found as can the English Gothic Revival. In the 20th century, more disciplined interpretations derived from historic precedents dominated the architecture. The Colonial Revival style was a major movement in this period as was Beaux Arts Classicism and Italian and French Classicism. Some of the most distinguished buildings are listed below:

Image: Wikipedia Commons/APK
Codman-Davis House (The Louise Home) NR
2145 Decatur Place
1906-7 Ogden Codman
The house designed in an English Georgian stylistic manner is U-shaped and set back from the street. Just west of the house connecting S and 22nd Sts. is a neighborhood landmark, the Spanish Steps. The steps and their lion-head fountain were designed and constructed by the Municipal Office of Public Works in 1911.

Image: Copyright DupontCircleReflections.us
Woodrow Wilson House NHL
2340 S Street
1915 Waddy Wood
Operated by the National Trust for Historic Preservation it is open to the public Tuesday through Sunday from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm. It is closed Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years Day. This house was occupied by President and Mrs. Wilson subsequent to his presidency. It is a Georgian Revival House with Adamesque interiors.

Image: Copyright DupontCircleReflections.us
The Textile Museum (Tucker and Myers House) NR
Tucker House 2320 S Street, 1908 Wood, Donn and Deming
Myers House 2310 S Street, 1912 John Russell Pope
The Textile Museum is open to the public Monday through Saturday from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, and Sundays from 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm.
An eclectic mixture of Georgian Revival to Beaux Arts styles.

The Lindens (King Hooper House) NR
2401 Kalorama Road
The Lindens was erected in Danvers, Massachusetts in 1754 by an unknown architect. It was moved to Kalorama in 1935 and rebuilt under the guidance of Walter Macomber.

Friend's Meeting House NR
2111 Florida Avenue
1930 Walter Price
Fieldstone buildings similar to those in Pennsylvania characterize this church.

St. Margaret's Episcopal Church
1820 Connecticut Avenue
1895;1900 James G. Hill; 1913 Arthur B. Heaton
Tiffany windows and exposed roof trusses on the interior contribute to the charm of this church.

Charles Evans Hughes House (Chancery of Burma) NHL
2223 R Street
1907 George Oakley Totten

Home of Charles Evans Hughes, 10th Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court Windsor Lodge (William E. Borah Apartment) NHL
2139-41 Wyoming Avenue
Apartment 21E was the residence of Idaho Senator William E. Borah, leading Republican progressive and a powerful force in promoting isolationist foreign policy during the 1920s.

The Dresden
2126 Connecticut Avenue
1909 Albert Beers

Image: Wikipedia Commons/AgnosticPreachersKid
Dumbarton Bridge (Buffalo Bridge) NR
Q Street over Rock Creek Park
1914 Glenn Brown, architect; Alexander Proctor, sculptor