Ecker, Grace Dunlop. A Portrait of Old George Town. 1933. Richmond. https://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=uc1.b4405139;view=1up;seq=43.
Dunlop Ecker’s A Portrait of Old Georgetown is a non-fiction account of the history of the physical area and people of Georgetown from the first settlement in the 1600s to the early 1930s. The author, Grace Dunlop Ecker, wrote it to be not only a history of Georgetown, the city in which his family has lived for generations upon generations, but also a history of the people who inhabited it and how it has evolved over time. The book includes “their work, their play, their thoughts and their beliefs,” creating an accurate depiction of what life in Georgetown was like in the 19th century when Ecker was living there (xi). In other words, A Portrait of Old George Town describes what it was like to be a “real Georgetonian,” (xii).
With this source, I will compare and contrast the current social context of Georgetown with Ecker’s depiction of historical Georgetown. How have the people changed? Has the reputation of the town changed? And of course, how has the evolution and growth of the layout of the built environment changed the people, if it has had any effect at all?
United States Commission of Fine Arts. Georgetown Architecture; Northwest Washington: District of Columbia. no. 10, vol. 6, [U.S. Govt. Print. Off], 1970, Washington. https://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=mdp.39015039872943;view=1up;seq=2
The US Commission of Fine Art’s Georgetown Architecture is a collection of documents describing the architecture of Georgetown from 1967-1970. It includes fourteen different significant buildings to the area and describes their exteriors. It gives background saying that the reason most buildings are true to their original style is because in 1950, Georgetown was made a Historic District by an act of Congress, so each structural change in the area must be overseen and approved by the Commission of Fine Arts. There are also pictures that go along with some of the descriptions. The descriptions also bring up the history of each architectural style and design choice, saying that certain houses are more influenced by 18th century Europe. Also the documents show the progression from the 18th to the 19th century, and how different styles popped up in Washington over time.
I plan to use this source to compare certain current buildings with how they looked when they were originally surveyed for this document. It would also be interesting to try and find pictures of historic Georgetown to compare even earlier accounts of what the structures looked like. I would also like to see how the growth has progressed. This source only talks about the fourteen most significant buildings in 1970, so I would like to research what has changed since then.