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Photographs of the Construction of Anderson House
August 10 @ 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm
Deputy Director and Curator Emily Schulz Parsons presents photographs of the construction of Anderson House. When the construction of Anderson House was completed in 1905, the mansion was celebrated for its elegant design and expert craftsmanship. Anderson House was one of the largest and most lavish private homes built during the first decade of the twentieth century in Dupont Circle—the most fashionable neighborhood in Washington, D.C., at the time. The mansion was also a technological achievement, with a steel frame and modern conveniences on the interior including a central heat system and electricity. With forty-five thousand square feet over five floors, it took three years to build the mansion, along with its walled garden and three-story carriage house and stable. Boston-based architects Arthur Little and Herbert Browne designed this urban estate and relied upon the firm Connery & Wentworth to oversee construction. Dozens of photographs survive in the library collections documenting the construction of Anderson House, revealing the materials and techniques used to build the structures, faces of the workmen who raised the buildings, and some of the surrounding neighborhood as it appeared in the early twentieth century. Most of the photographs were taken by Henry F. Withey, a draftsman with Little and Browne who represented the architects on site and sent weekly progress photographs back to Boston.