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Alleyways of DC Walking Tour

May 4 @ 11:00 am - 12:00 pm

Alleyways have long been a feature of DC’s built environment, hidden behind the high-style facades of the city’s thoroughfares. These often-unseen spaces ultimately became centers of African American community and resilience. Despite congressional intervention to halt alleyway construction, the city had over 3,300 alleyway dwellings by 1912. Additionally, many city residents used alleyways for stables, garages, and warehouses. In the 1930s, alleyways were once again targeted – this time by the Alley Dwelling Authority – which resulted in the displacement of Washingtonians and the loss of historic fabric. Luckily, thanks to grassroots activism and changing views on alleyways, many alley buildings and structures were saved from demolition in the postwar era. These unique structures have since been preserved and rehabilitated. Join tour guide Zachary Burt to visit some of the remaining alleyways of the Capitol Hill Historic District, which continue to house and serve Washingtonians, decades after their original construction. This tour will take place in the Capitol Hill Historic District, which has the most alley buildings and structures of any DC historic district.

This program has a ticket cost of $15.00 for DCPL Members and a ticket cost of $25.00 for non-members. Please click here to reserve your spot!


May 4
11:00 am - 12:00 pm