The Seventh Street Savings Bank was formed in 1912, during an economic rebound that followed the “Knickerbocker” Panic of 1907. The two-story bank building was constructed in 1912-13. The layout of the bank is illustrative of the investment strategies needed to sustain such small institutions. Apartments were housed upstairs and shops and apartments were located in an adjacent wing on 7th Street (now demolished). The bank failed in the banking crisis of 1933, and was one of eight banks merged and reorganized as the Hamilton National Bank.
The building design by the firm of (Alfred) Rich & (Alphonsus) FitzSimons typifies the customary classical style. The temple-front facade is executed in textured buff brick with limestone and terra cotta trim. Large arched windows with iron grilles, and a long side window bay light the banking hall. The building is now the lone survivor of a once-vibrant commercial block.
The Seventh Street Savings Bank is historically significant as a representative example of a small, independent bank--a type of financial institution that, prior to the Federal Reserve Act of 1914, specifically catered to the various neighborhoods of Washington, D.C. It served the financial needs of the surrounding community that included the residents, clients, and merchants of the vibrant 7th Street Corridor.
DC Inventory listing: November 21, 2002
National Register Listing: September 17, 2003