Formed in 1912 during the economic rebound that followed the Knickerbocker Trust Panic of 1907, the Seventh Street Savings Bank is an 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.
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, and its design, by the firm of Rich & FitzSimons, is typical of the customary classical style. 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 that once housed it is now the lone survivor of a once-vibrant commercial block and has been repurposed as an apartment building.
DC Inventory: November 21, 2002
National Register: September 17, 2003