Alibi Club

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Alibi Club
Alibi Club - Washington, D.C..jpg
Alibi Club is located in Central Washington, D.C.
Alibi Club
Alibi Club is located in the District of Columbia
Alibi Club
Alibi Club is located in the US
Alibi Club
Location1806 I Street, NW
Washington, D.C.[1]
Coordinates38°54′4.65″N 77°2′31.91″W / 38.9012917°N 77.0421972°W / 38.9012917; -77.0421972Coordinates: 38°54′4.65″N 77°2′31.91″W / 38.9012917°N 77.0421972°W / 38.9012917; -77.0421972
Architectural styleItalianate
NRHP reference #94001221
Added to NRHPOctober 21, 1994[1]

The Alibi Club is a private, traditional gentlemen's club in Washington, D.C. Its members comprise the Washington elite, including presidents, senators,[2] and diplomats,[1] among other prominent figures.


In 1884, seven Washingtonians founded the Alibi Club, a private social club consisting of prominent political and social figures. Its name derived from the club practice of providing an alibi when the whereabouts of a member was questioned by the member's family. The club's founding purpose was to foster "mutual improvement, education, and enlightenment" among members of Washington society. Membership also extended to out of town figures from New York City, Boston and Philadelphia, most likely to share information between communities and help in the development of strategies to address civic issues. Throughout its history, it has hosted numerous world leaders, including King Leopold of Belgium, Prince Albert of Belgium, Prince Henry of Prussia, and Viceroy Li Hung Chang.[1]


The first clubhouse was situated at 17th and Pennsylvania Avenue, NW. Since 1886, the club has occupied a three-story, brick townhouse blocks away from the White House. The clubhouse is furnished with donated memorabilia and artifacts that cover nearly every available section of wall on the first two floors. The clubhouse is also notable as a well-preserved example of residential architecture in a commercial district, and was added to the National Register of Historic Places on October 21, 1994.[1] In 2018 the building was listed as a vacant property.[3]


Membership is limited to fifty, with new members admitted upon unanimous vote after the death of a previous member. Membership is not revealed to outsiders, and the first public notice of membership is often in a member's obituary.[2]

Some of the Alibi Club's most prominent members have included: President George H.W. Bush,[4] his father, Senator Prescott Bush, Supreme Court Justices Potter Stewart and Stanley F. Reed, Allen Dulles and John Foster Dulles, Speaker of the House Nicholas Longworth, and General George C. Marshall.[1]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai aj ak al am an ao ap aq ar as at au av aw ax ay az ba bb bc bd "NATIONAL REGISTER OF HISTORIC PLACES REGISTRATION FORM". United States Department of the Interior, National Park Service. 1994. Retrieved July 28, 2011.
  2. ^ a b c Kelly, John (May 10, 2009). "My Alibi? They Wouldn't Answer Answer Man". The Washington Post. Retrieved May 12, 2009.
  3. ^ Delgadillo, Natalie (June 13, 2018). "Did This Old Timey Washington Gentleman's Club Go Extinct?". DCist. Archived from the original on 2018-06-14. Retrieved June 14, 2018.
  4. ^ a b "Bush Belongs to 3 Men's Clubs". The New York Times. February 1, 1989. Retrieved May 12, 2009.
  5. ^ "ConocoPhillips White House Lecture Series - 10/26/2005: David M. Abshire". George Bush Presidential Library Foundation. Retrieved July 28, 2011.
  6. ^ "DAVID C. ACHESON, ESQUIRE: Oral History Project" (PDF). Historical Society of the District of Columbia Circuit. 2010. Retrieved December 21, 2011. Pg. 35
  7. ^ Raju, Manu (November 7, 2011). "On the menu: Bipartisanship". Politico. Retrieved December 21, 2011.
  8. ^ "Inventory of the Warren R. Austin Collection, 1877-1962". University of Vermont. Retrieved January 4, 2012.

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