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  • Scurlock photo of this location, dated 1936, from the Smithsonian archives:

    • That is amazing! How were you able to find it?

    • Great photo! Back when duke ellington lived there. If I’m not mistaken, Shaw had been black since the civil war days..until now of course.

      • Nonsense! The 1930 manuscript census shows a very large white population still inhabiting much of what we now call Shaw and U Street. I say “still” because it was down from earlier years. And there was very little development north of about O Street until after the Civil War, and so no real neighborhood until the late 1800s. If you are going to jabber about DC history, do some research.

        Nice photo, btw.

        • Thank you, Brian! My white great-great grandparents are shown as living on Q street (between 6th and 7th, as I recall) in either the 1890 or 1900 census.

          Almost as dumb as the people who say “Georgetown used to be black.” No, parts of Georgetown were black.

  • The full name is apparently the “Ancient Independent Order of Moses”, which would appear to have been an African American fraternal order of some sort.

  • I was always under the impression that the houses on T Street near 14th Street were, back in Jim Crow days, built for “colored” folks. That particularly building is very nice – – the Ancient Independent Order of Moses must have been a fraternal order for the more affluent professional blacks in the area. It would be interesting to know more about it.

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