The Roosevelt makes a significant contribution to the understanding of the development of the apartment building. Approval for the Roosevelt was granted on October 17, 1898 with the issuance of D.C. Permit to Build #625. The architect was C. Graham and Son. A builder was not listed on the permit. Mahlon Groo was the original owner. These people did not play major roles in the development of apartment buildings in Washington, D.C. Their contribution, rather, is their ability to
respond to the need for a new type of housing that would meet the needs of the growing middle class. The Roosevelt apartment building is presented in the form of a double row house.
The building functions as a single building, but has two adjacent front doors located in the center of the facade which serve the six independent apartment units. The use of a traditional architectural form for the exterior conceals the multi-family function of the building. However, the rowhouse form with its inherent single-family residence connotation is contradicted by the prominence of the building's name, located across the central bays, which publicizes a different function. The Roosevelt is a vernacular example of an early effort to provide sufficient housing for a growing middle-class population with minimal compromise of accepted social values as idealized in the single-family residence.