Here's where they cleaned the streets in 1898
In 1898, streets in downtown DC got cleaned by hand every day, while many streets in Logan Circle, Capitol Hill, and what's now NoMA got cleaned 3 times a week.
Georgetown BID head Joe Sternlieb has this old map hanging in his office. It shows the street cleaning system for the "City of Washington,"
which at the time was distinct from though by 1898, there wasn't still a formal distinction between the city and the surrounding Washington County that had made up the rest of the District.
The city did "daily hand cleaning" of roads for a few blocks around the White House, while downtown roads got "daily hand cleaning under contract." Other streets got "machine cleaning" 3, 2, or 1 time per week.
Today, many of the BIDs do have people doing some form of daily cleaning, such as picking up trash, while city cleaning is at most once a week. But probably the street sweeping trucks are more sophisticated today.
Oh, and there were public dumps ringing the city, along Rock Creek, in Columbia Heights, Near Northeast and along the Anacostia. Some of those sites seem to be on the grounds of schools today (such as Francis-Stevens and Meyer), while it looks like the one to the northeast of the city is where the NoMA Harris Teeter is today.
What do you notice?
- Think you know Metro? It's whichWMATA week 61
- A senseless skirmish in Toronto is a welcome reminder to share street space
- Help us rebrand and relaunch our website with a short survey
- Lousiana Avenue could get a protected bikeway
- Prince George's County could move its government closer to more residents
- Denver's beautiful Union Station mixes old and new
- What we hope to do on housing