Several of the Distric's most prominent black lawyers have rebuffed initial White House-sanctioned requests that they consider a nomination as U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia, according to numerous legal and political sources here.

The $50,000-a-year job is one of the few remaining major political appointments available in the District for an incumbent Prresidet and has long been considered a prize opportunity for legal or political advancement by attorneys.

The major problem encountered by the Carter administration, however, appears to be that the black attorneys of the stature and age group being contacted are at the point in their legal careers where other economic and professional opportunities carry more appeal for them than the law enforcement job.

Ironically, the search is being conducted at a time when the current U.S. attorney, Earl J. Silbert, appears to have won high marks from the tops levels of the Justice Department under President Carter as well as in the local law enforcement community. In fact, many of th sources involved in the search for a black U.S. attorney quickly mention their high personal regard for Silbert and make it clear there is no urgency that he be replaced.

The low-key search that is being conducted illustrates the uniqueness of Washington's political structure, and, at the same time, one of the unusual side effects of the quick rise to legal prominence by black attorneys in the city.

Unlike many states, where the political machinery of an incumbent administration often has attorneys lined up to apply for the powerful political appointment U.S. Attorney, there has been no push in the District of Columbia for quick replacement of the current Federal prosecutor.

Instead, the predominantly black Democratic party machinery here and administration officials interested in District affairs have quietly asked several prominent black attorneys if they would be interested in the job, sources said.

Most of the attorneys contacted, however, reportedly have rejected the idea of becoming U.S. Attorney - some more than once. Such an offer and rejection would have been improbable for a black attorney 10 years ago.

One of the black attorneys contacted in the search, Vincent Cohen, said the adminstration is placing its sights too high by asking black partners in top law firms if they're interested in becoming the U.S. attorney nominee.

"Ten years ago, great. Ten years from now great. But I can't do it now," said Cohen, a partner in the prestigious firm of Hogan and Hartson. "They want a black to take a few steps down to move a few steps up."

Cohen said a "black superstar" mentality is being expressed by the administration in its search. Pointing to other appointments in other jurisdiction, he said white U.S. attorneys have traditionally included younger lawyer, but "when it's a black appointment, the rules of the game change. Why do we have to go out and get a superstar?"

Administration officials are quick to point out, however, that they would want only the highest caliber of person to nominate for the U.S. Attorney's job here regardless of race, because of the unusual nature and status of the position here.

The U.S. Attorney is the chief prosecutor for virtually all crimes in the District, ranging from sophisticated white-collar frauds to murder and robbery.

Washington is the only city in the U.S. where the job includes the latter category of crimes, since it is the only location where the federal prosecutor is also the local prosecutor.

In addition, it is the largest U.S. attorney's office, employing 161 attorneys, and represents the U.S. government in some of its most important and complex civil lawsuits.

In addition, it is the largest U.S. attorney's office, employing 161 attorneys, and represents the U.S. government in some of its most important and complex civil lawsuits.

That is why, according to sources involved in the search, the persons being contacted or considered include experienced attorneys such as Cohen; Williams and Connolly partner Robert P. Watkins; Covington anf Builing partner Wesley S. Williams Jr.; D. C. Democratic State Committee Chairman Robert B. Washington Jr., and D. C. Superior Court judges Norma Johnson and John Garrett Penn.

Watkins said that when he was contacted about the position, he made it clear that he was not interested in being considered "at this particular time in my career." As did others, he said he felt the experience he would get in continued private practice would be more important to his career than a stint as U.S. attorney, a largely administrative job.

Some attorneys, who asked not to be named, said more bluntly that the financial considerations were just as important to them and that they no longer considered the U.S. Attorney's job a stepping stone to a possible judgeship here. "If I want to become a judge, I can become a judge without taking a cut in pay for a while," said one black attorney who some persons estimate earns $100,000 a year in a law firm here.

Others who have been contacted refused to discuss the search proces for attribution, calling it a "very delicate" political matter.

"I like Earl Silbert. He's been a decent guy and he's a Democrat," said one black attorney with whom the job has been discussed. He said, however, that many local politicians feel the Carter administration should appoint a black to fill the post.

D.C. Del. Walter E. Fauntroy earlier this year suggested to White House aides that he be allowed to appoint a commission to nominate a new U.S. Attorney, a plan that was rejected. A spokesman for Fauntory said the purpose of that approach was an attempt by Fauntroy to make sure that, as the highest-ranking elected Democrat here, he had some input in the next selection.

One White House aide said the appointment of a new U.S. Attorney for the District is far down the priority list for the Carter administration, mainly because Silbert is doing a good job and it has been more important for the administration to focus on its U.S. Attorney's appointments in other jurisdictions where the problem was acute either politically or otherwise.

He said the only reason that it appears the search is quickening now is because White House aides who are interested in District affairs have had more time to concentrate on the issue recently.

"There has been no decision to replace Silbert," said the White House official. "Silbert has done a fine job, and still is, for that matte."

James Dyke, and aide to Vice President Mondale who concentrates on District affairs, agreed that there is "no sense of urgency" to the replacement of Silbert, whose four-year term expires in October, 1979. "We have talked to various people about the job, but obviously, no offers have been made," Dyde said.

Persons familiar with the Justice Department hierarchy's attitude toward Silbert said they consider it unlikely that a real attempt will be made to replce Silbert before his term ends because Silbert has earned high marks for his prosecutorial ability and legal advice.

They point to what they described as Silbert's high visibility in the handling of the Hanafi takeover last March soon after the Carter administration had arrived, Silbert's knowledge of the inner workings of the justice Department, his success at increasing cooperation between various segments of the D.C. law enforcement community, and his major role in developing undercover "Sting" operations to catch thieves and the new career criminal program aimed at repeat offenders here.

Much of Silbert's image problem, they contend, comes from past criticism of handling of the original porters say, however, that criticism was unfounded and has been surpassed by his subsequent 84-to-12 confirmation by the Senate in October, 1975, after nearly two years of examination by the Senate.

Among those voting for Silbert's confirmation, his supporters noted, was then U.S. Sen. Walter F. Mondale (D-Minn), as well as numerous other Democratic Senate leaders.