Riding the 90s?

Both Metrobus Route 90 and 92 operate between Southeast DC and Duke Ellington Bridge via Eighth Street, Florida Avenue, and U Street. Historically, the U Street-Garfield Line was a streetcar line, operated under the Capital Traction Company in the late nineteenth century.

Along this route today, you’ll travel the U Street Corridor. Known for its rich connection to Black history, the corridor serves as the heart of Black culture and entertainment in the city. To this day, several theaters remain including the Lincoln Theater, Dunbar Theater, and Howard Theater, where some of the greatest musicians of the twentieth century got their start.

Along Florida Avenue, keep an eye out for the historic Gallaudet University Campus. Founded in 1864, Gallaudet University is one of the world’s premier collegiate institutions for Deaf and hard of hearing students.

The route also features the Washington Navy Yard. Between 1900 and 1918, the growth of the Washington Navy Yard sparked a development boom along the Eighth Street SE corridor. The increased population of both military personnel and civilians─along with the general prosperity of the times─was a boon to area businesses. This area also features one of DC’s smallest historic districts: The Marine Barracks. Established in 1801 on a site selected by Thomas Jefferson, the Marine Barracks is entirely surrounded by a residential community and retains much of the feel of a nineteenth century military post.

This tour hopes to draw your attention to the hidden gems along your daily commute or your trip from one historic site to the next. Start at the historic site that’s closest to you! If you’re traveling east/south on routes 90/92, click “Next” to follow along. If you're traveling west/north, click “Previous.”

Marine Barracks, Main Gate

The Main Gate serves as the entrance to the Marine Barracks Historic District. The US Marine Corps Barracks and Commandant’s House comprise the nation’s oldest continually active Marine Corps installation. Situated in southeast Washington, the post…

Marine Corps Commandant's House

Designed by Geroge Hadfield (1763-1926), the Marine Corps Commandant’s House is the only original building on the complex. This white-painted, Flemish-bonded brick residence has served as the home of the Commandants of the U.S. Marine Corps since its…

Marine Barracks Historic District

The Marine Barracks Historic District is a quadrangle of buildings surrounding a central parade ground, and it includes approximately a dozen buildings built between 1801 and 1935.The Marine Barracks is the nation’s oldest continuously active Marine…

Gallaudet University, Chapel Hall

Built in 1870, Chapel Hall was once the main hub of Gallaudet University, serving as a chapel, auditorium, exhibit center, and dining hall. The landscape architecture firm, Olmsted, Vaux & Co. made the plan for the school’s grounds in 1866, hence…

Union Market Historic District

Union Market Terminal is a large complex of wholesale warehouse buildings occupying an approximately forty-acre tract of land located east of Union Station between Florida and New York Avenues NE. Conceived in 1928 by a federation of wholesalers…

Wardman Flats

The Wardman Flats are the first large-scale development project of DC's most notable developer, Harry Wardman (1872-1938). Throughout the 1890s, Wardman transitioned from carpenter to builder, largely building residential rowhouses for other…

Howard Theatre

Built in 1910, the Howard Theatre is one of the oldest theaters in the country that not only served Black audiences but provided a space for Black performers. For more than five decades of the twentieth century, the Howard Theatre stood at the…

Southern Aid Society Building-Dunbar Theater Building

While Black architect Isaiah T. Hatton (1883-1921) designed the building in the Italian Renaissance Revival style, Reginald W. Geare (1889-1927) designed the movie theater on the first floor of the 1921 building. Similar to other establishments in…

Prince Hall Masonic Temple

Founded in 1825 by both enslaved people and free Black people, Prince Hall Masonic Temple became the headquarters to the nation’s earliest and largest Black fraternity. When the Prince Hall Masonic Temple decided to move its original headquarters,…

True Reformer Building

The United Order of True Reformers served as a bank and insurance company that catered to the Black community and was the first major commission of prominent Black architect John A. Lankford. The building is considered one of the first in the United…

Lincoln Theatre

A major element of the historic U Street commercial corridor, the Lincoln Theatre is a rare early movie theater. The Lincoln was completed in 1921 in the sumptuous style of the grand movie palaces of the day. The neoclassical theater retains a high…

PEPCO Substation No. 25

Founded in 1891, the Potomac Electric Company merged with the Washington Railway and Electric Company to become the Potomac Electric Power Company (PEPCO) in 1902. In 1907, PEPCO established a new central generating power plant along Benning Road,…

Duke Ellington Bridge (Calvert Street Bridge)

Built in 1935, this bridge replaced the 1891 iron trestle bridge that had been constructed in the same location. The Commission of Fine Arts considered bridge designs for this site for years before finally settling on Paul Philippe Cret’s…