Adams Morgan (June 19, 2020)
Today, we started exploring the heart of Adams Morgan. It’s a little more urban and gritty than neighboring Kalorama. The neighborhood gets its distinctive name from the two formerly segregated area elementary schools. The older black school was named for Thomas P. Morgan, an American writer, editor and poet who lived from 1864 to 1928. The white school was named for John Quincy Adams, the sixth president of the United States. District schools were desegregated in 1955 and the Adams-Morgan Community Council formed in 1958 to implement the desegregation. Historically, the area has been culturally diverse and politically left leaning. However, like the surrounding neighborhoods, since the 1990s, it has become gentrified. It does still retain a degree of diversity, most evident in the array of international shops and restaurants that line 18th Street and Columbia Road.
Community activity, centers around the Marie H. Reed Learning Center which combines an elementary school, health center and community center. The sprawling center, constructed in 1977, is surrounded by tennis and basketball courts, playgrounds, an athletic field and outdoor chess tables. It stands at the spot where the Morgan school once stood. The center is named for Marie Reed, a local African American minister and civic leader who was instrumental in having the old dilapidated school torn down and replaced with the new center.
Adams Morgan’s side streets consist mainly of row houses and low rise apartment buildings.
There are also some great murals.
And some quiet spots to catch up on some reading, do some work or check your emails and texts.