The larger of two remaining fragments of a formerly contiguous neighborhood around Mount Vernon Square, this district stretches north of downtown along the old streetcar lines on 7th, 9th, and 11th Streets. The neighborhood developed mostly after the Civil War as an economically and racially mixed community, with buildings of diverse quality in a rich variety of architectural styles. Rowhouses dominate a streetscape punctuated by churches, apartment buildings, and a few commercial strips. Owner-built homes are scattered throughout, but most of the housing stock is speculative construction, reflecting late-19th century mass-production technology and a taste for more elaborate building form and embellishment. There are approximately 450 contributing buildings, dating from c.1833 to 1932.
DC Inventory: July 22, 1999 as part of an expanded district including the Blagden Alley/Naylor Court HD (effective September 7, 1999)
National Register: September 9, 1999 as Mount Vernon West Historic District
DC designation amended December 16, 1999 to create a separate Shaw Historic District