HistoryQuest DC website with detailed building info

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Andrew T.
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HistoryQuest DC website with detailed building info

Post by Andrew T. » 01 Dec 2016 22:12

The D.C. Historic Preservation Office debuted an interactive GIS map this week called HistoryQuest DC. I'm not usually a fan of heavily script-laden websites, but this one might be an exception.

The website contains extremely detailed information on every building in the District...supermarkets included. By searching for the address, I just learned that this unassuming ex-Safeway dates back to 1941, contains 4 rooms, measures 45' by 150', was designed by Russell O. Kludge, and was built by Beauchamp Inc. out of concrete, brick, and steel for $20,000. I had no idea that depth of information had ever been recorded.

The best feature of HistoryQuest might be the Query tool. You can actually search for buildings by "Original Owner"...even if the original owner was a store chain that moved out decades ago. "Safeway" turned up 9 results, while "Sanitary Grocery" turned up 30.

Combined with our host's research, the picture we have of Washington, D.C.'s grocery history is now almost perfect.
"The pale pastels which have been featured in most food stores during the past 20 years are no longer in tune with the mood of the 1970s."
Andrew Turnbull

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