The Duke Street Tanyard

The Duke Street Tanyard (HM1DJ4)

Location: Alexandria, VA 22314
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Country: United States of America
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N 38° 48.234', W 77° 3.481'

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Alexandria Heritage Trail

Peter Wise, a city councilman and tanner, established the Duke Street Tanyard in 1797. The Business was situated near the stone bridge on the east bank of Hooff's Run by West End Village. The tannery's ownership and name changed many times; Quakers operated the large tannery from 1812 until it was destroyed by fire in 1853.

West End, Alexandria's first suburb, was a processing center for cattle, which were brought here for slaughter and butchering. The hides were then taken to the tannery to be processed into leather by soaking them in solutions of lime, tree bark, and animal dung. The tanned hides were curried by oiling, scrapping, and pounding and then made into saddles, harness and boots.

"The Tannery was located in what was once called Spring Gardens Farm just "beyond the [town's] Corporation limits and... of course, exempt from taxation" along a major commercial artery, Little River Turnpike." — Alexandria Gazette, 1844.

Archaeological excavations were conducted here in 2000, prior to construction. It was discovered that the remains of the tanyard were destroyed during the 20th century. Most of the original soil had been removed, and later, fill soils were brought in to level the property. However, in the area where a brick house once stood, archaeologists discovered artifacts dating to the nineteenth century — small reminders of the families of the tanners that once lived on this site.
HM NumberHM1DJ4
Placed ByTh Marriott Corporation in cooperation with Alexandria Museum Office of Historic Alexandria
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Thursday, October 2nd, 2014 at 2:04am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18S E 321293 N 4297027
Decimal Degrees38.80390000, -77.05801667
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 38° 48.234', W 77° 3.481'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds38° 48' 14.04" N, 77° 3' 28.86" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)202, 703, 571
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 205 Daingerfield Rd, Alexandria VA 22314, US
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