Washington's oldest house and one of the city's few surviving early stone buildings, the Old Stone House in Georgetown, will celebrate its 225th anniversary from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, June 13.
The free celebration will feature tours of the house and its large perennial gardens, along with spinning demonstrations, craft-making for children and cake for visitors.
The house is located at 3051 M St. NW, originially called Bridge Street, in the heart of Georgetown's historic district. It was built in 1765 by Christopher Layman, a cabinet maker. Cassandra Chew purchased the house in 1767, and added the kitchen and additional rooms upstairs. Chew and her family had a close relationship with Robert Peters, a merchant and Georgetown's first mayor.
The building has served as both a residence and a shop for most of its existence, with the ground floor used by a cabinet maker, a watch maker, a printer, a cobbler, a tailor, a gunsmith, a painter and a glazer.
In the early 1950s, after the Old Stone House and garden had been turned into a used car lot, the National Park Service bought the site for $90,000. The building and grounds were restored, several rooms were furnished, and the house was opened to the public in 1960.
Today craft demonstrations are given by Park Service volunteers and employees in colonial costume, providing a glimpse of middle class life in 18th century Georgetown. The large garden, with perennial flower beds containing many flowers common in 18th century gardens, replaces the building shown on the right in the 1925 photograph. The building on the left, built in 1795, was torn down in 1958 to create a parking lot.