Then and Now by the House History Man is a series by Paul K. Williams. Paul has been researching house histories in DC since 1995, having completed more than 1,500 to date. Read Paul’s previous post here.
Many people can’t imagine Cleveland Park without its leafy canopy of trees, but the reality is that it was developed in the early 1900s just a suburban tract is today; trees clear cut for the most part, and the new homes surrounded by young saplings and little else. This 1904 view of Newark Street, NW from the Moore & Hill Real Estate brochure shows what the original residents would have seen when they moved in. The Tudor house on the right at 2941 Newark was built at a cost of $8,000 by the Cleveland Park Company in 1898 and was designed by Robert Head. Behind it is 2945 Newark, which was built by John Sherman in 1902-1903 at a cost of $5,500.
Today one can barely see some houses from the street, and mature trees provide privacy between each house. This photograph from 2002 from the same front yard illustrates the change during the last 100 years, from open yards to a lush treed setting.
(Photographs from Washington Then & Now by Paul K. Williams and T. Luke Young (Arcadia, 2002). Contemporary photograph by T. Luke Young)