Locals who want to learn the history behind some of D.C.’s murals will have plenty to see during a bus tour scheduled to roll through the District this weekend.
The “D.C. Murals Guided Bus Tour” is scheduled to begin outside of the Carnegie Library (801 K St. NW) on Sunday, Nov. 6, at 10 a.m., according to its Eventbrite page.
During the tour, Perry Frank, Ph.D., and Cory Stowers — the duo behind local art blog D.C. Murals — will point out some of the city’s most recognizable public paintings.
“D.C.’s current murals began as socially conscious art in the late 1960s, and now may be abstract and decorative, quasi-advertisement, computer generated, or graffiti inspired,” the event listing reads. “Riders will disembark for closer looks at the political, commemorative, angry, and celebratory expressions of city concerns.”
If there’s anyone who knows about the District’s public art, it’s Frank and Stowers. For more than 20 years, they’ve catalogued murals throughout the city. The duo is also working on a new coffee table book called “D.C. Murals: Spectacle and Story.”
Tickets cost $30.
Though the signs along the trail were installed over the summer, the trail will officially open with an unveiling 11 a.m. Saturday in the Park at LeDroit (3rd and Elm streets NW).
The ceremony will include performances from the Dunbar High School Color Guard, the Howard University Gospel Choir and poet E. Ethelbert Miller.
The trail, a series of historical signs and markers throughout the neighborhoods, focuses on the area’s historic role in promoting desegregation and African-American civil rights in Washington.
Eric Fidler, president of the LeDroit Park Civic Association, explained that the neighborhood was once a focal point for notable African-American politicians, activists, artists and scientists. Famous former residents include D.C.’s first elected mayor and convention center namesake Walter Washington, influential suffrage and civil rights advocate Mary Church Terrell and Edward Brooke, the first African-American Senator.
The trail is a project that is more than six years in the making and is made of signs identical to those in other neighborhood heritage trails across the city. Researchers and historians from Cultural Tourism DC, a nonprofit that creates the heritage trails around the District, spent years digging up the history of the neighborhood and interviewing longtime residents.
Fidler said that the trail is an opportunity to collect the stories and memories of those residents and preserve them for the future.
“A lot of neighborhood history exists in people’s heads and in stories and family photographs,” Fidler said. “The problem is if you don’t have a program to put it all together, a lot of it could be lost forever.”
After performances and speeches by community member, attendees can participate in three guided “mini-tours” that will cover portions of the trail. The unveiling event is free and open to the public.
Photo via LeDroit Park Civic Association
LeDroit Park Civic Association President Eric Fidler will lead a free walking tour as part of WalkingTown DC on Sept. 27 at 1 p.m.
The tour, which begins at the intersection of 6th Street and Florida Avenue NW and spans .8 miles, will educate residents on local architecture and the people who transformed the neighborhood.
Attendees will hear stories about notable neighborhood figures as Dr. Anna J. Cooper, Mayor Walter Washington, Duke Ellington, Rev. Jesse Jackson, and others. The tour will also cover the 12 different architectural styles seen on buildings throughout the neighborhood.
Though the tour is free, residents must RSVP in order to attend.
Photo via Twitter.com/DCculture
Courtesy of Dupont Forum on Yahoo! Groups… two events next weekend at the Historical Society of Washington, D.C.
- Saturday, December 6 at 3 p.m.: Performance by bell ringers, Mitchell Ringers (adults) and Jubilee Ringers (7th graders). Includes 7-octave hand bells and choir chimes.
- Sunday, December 7 at 2:30 p.m.: Author lecture, Patricia Daly-Lipe discusses her book “Forbidden Loves,” about life in Paris between the First and Second World Wars.
The Historical Society of Washington, DC, is located at 801 K Street NW (Mount Vernon Square Metro stop). All events are free unless otherwise indicated. For more information, visit the Web site or call 202 383-1800.