After two years of uncertainty, the F Street club at 1925 F Street will stay right where it is. This is the presitigious club where every president since Franklin D. Roosevelt had dined.
The pre-Civil War off-white brick structure, owned by George Washington University, had been under consideration for removal on a flatbed truck to another site GW owns on 21st Street. It was to have been replaced by a structure for the World Bank Building.
But yesterday the District of Columbia Zoning Commission decided to keep the club where it is. A long-term lease will be worked out at the Sept. 20 meeting of the club's board, since the present lease expires on Sept. 30.
The house, which is Greek revival design, was built in 1849 by Sarah and Charles Steedman. Steedman was a naval officer who was attached to the Naval Observator.
After the civil War, the house was sold to Washington businessman Alexander Ray, and today is always referred to as the "Ray House."
Later it passed through many hands. In 1924, it was leased by James Freeman Curtis, whose wife, Laura, looking for a place to entertain, settled on the Ray House, which was not in a socially prominent neigborhood at that time.
But she made it the salon of Washington Society. Later when she moved away and divorced Curtis, her friends begged her to turn her home into a club. She did this in 1933.