The Homer Building appears to have been named for Homer Guerry, a Washington lawyer who had previously owned much of the property on which it was erected. It was opened for occupancy during World War I, which created a shortage of office space in the capital. As a result, government agencies, such as the Bureau of Plant Industry of the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Bureau of War Economics, were among the first tenants. The Russian Government Purchasing Commission rented space in this building during World War I, and as late as 1920 the Belgian Commission was housed here. However, its main tenants were non-federal, such as insurance companies, architects, lawyers, and organizations such as the Washington Chamber of Commerce.
The building reflects the period of the city's commercial life between the world wars. Architecturally, the building is a combination of the Commercial style with neoclassical ornamentation and some Sullivanesque detailing. The original facade was incorporated in a new building between 1988 and 1989.
DC Inventory: June 8, 1983