General Federation of Women's Clubs Headquarters

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General Federation of Women's Clubs Headquarters
General Federation of Women's Clubs headquarters.JPG
General Federation of Women's Clubs Headquarters is located in Washington, D.C.
General Federation of Women's Clubs Headquarters
General Federation of Women's Clubs Headquarters is located in the US
General Federation of Women's Clubs Headquarters
Location 1734 N St., NW, Washington, D.C.
Coordinates 38°54′25″N 77°2′25″W / 38.90694°N 77.04028°W / 38.90694; -77.04028Coordinates: 38°54′25″N 77°2′25″W / 38.90694°N 77.04028°W / 38.90694; -77.04028
Architectural style Renaissance
NRHP reference # 91002057
Significant dates
Added to NRHP December 4, 1991[1]
Designated NHL December 4, 1991[2]

The General Federation of Women's Clubs Headquarters, also known as the Miles Mansion, is a social clubhouse headquarters in Washington, D.C.. Built as a private residence in 1875, it has served as the headquarters of the General Federation of Women's Clubs (GFWC) since 1922. It was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1991 for its association with the federation, which serves as an umbrella organization for women's clubs, a social movement dating to the mid-19th century.[2][3] Tours of the headquarters, available by appointment, provide information about the activities of the GFWC and several historic rooms, including the 1734 entryway, the Julia Ward Howe Drawing Room, the dining room, music room and the GFWC International President’s office. The headquarters also features changing exhibits of art, photographs and artifacts from its collections.

Description and building history[edit]

The GFWC headquarters is located southeast of Dupont Circle, on the south side of N Street between St. Matthew's Court and 17th Street. It is a four story masonry structure, built out of ashlar stone in a Renaissance Revival style. The entrance is in a slightly raised basement level, sheltered by a splayed glass and iron marquee with supporting ironwork brackets. The main floor windows are elongated, with paired casement windows topped by transoms, and keystoned lintels. A polygonal bay projects from the first two floors on the left, and a shallower rectangular one projects to the right of the entrance; both are topped by lower balustrades. The interior has been adapted for the GFWC's use, but retains some original finishes.[3]

The house was built in 1875 by Rear Admiral William Radford, at a time when the Dupont Circle area was being developed as a fashionable residential neighborhood. In 1895 he sold the house to the state of Massachusetts, which gave it to General Nelson A. Miles in recognition for his military service. It was next owned by John Jay White, a big-game hunter who traveled with Theodore Roosevelt, and who commissioned the murals by Albert Herter that adorn some of its walls. In 1922 the house was purchased by the GFWC for use as its headquarters, a role it continues to play today.[3]

The GFWC represents the culmination of smaller-scale women's organizations that sprang up in the 19th century, generally to improve the conditions for working and single women. It was the first nationwide organization of this type, enabling a broader scope of influence by these local and regional organizations.[3]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ National Park Service (2007-01-23). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service.
  2. ^ a b "General Federation of Women's Club Headquarters". National Historic Landmark summary listing. National Park Service. Archived from the original on 2011-06-06. Retrieved 2008-05-08.
  3. ^ a b c d Page Putnam Miller and Jill S. Topolski (June 6, 1991). "National Register of Historic Places Registration: General Federation of Women's Clubs Headquarters" (pdf). National Park Service. and Accompanying photos, exterior, from 1989 (32 KB)

External links[edit]