Built in 1907 for A. Clifford and Alice Pike Barney by George Oakley Totten, this house is most notable as the home of Charles Evans Hughes—a statesman and juror of the highest order, a leader in the Progressive movement, and the holder of a succession of important offices, from the administration of William Howard Taft to the New Deal. When first appointed in 1910 to the Supreme Court, of which he later became Chief Justice, Hughes took his place alongside Oliver Wendell Holmes as one of the conservative body's two distinguished dissidents, exercising a powerful voice in progressive reform and as an early champion of civil rights and racial equality.
Although a native of New York, Hughes made Washington his permanent home. He and Mrs. Hughes purchased the commodious R Street residence, next door to Mr. and Mrs. Charles Francis Adams, in 1930, when he returned to the city as Chief Justice. For the rest of their lives, longer than they had lived anywhere else, the Hughes resided here, maintaining the order and efficiency that had always characterized their daily existence. As at his earlier Washington home, Hughes maintained a study on the first floor. "From these modest quarters," writes Hughes' biographer Marlo Pusey, "the Supreme Court was to be directed for eleven years."
Now occupied by the Ambassador of Burma, the dwelling is outwardly unchanged.
DC Inventory: June 19, 1973
National Register and National Historic Landmark: November 28, 1972
Within Sheridan-Kalorama Historic District