The Memorial Pool

The Memorial Pool (HM1J6P)

Location: Alexandria, VA 22314
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Country: United States of America
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N 38° 48.765', W 77° 2.893'

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Casualties of Segregation

African Americans in Alexandria suffered, along with other of their race, when a segregated system prevented them from enjoying recreation facilities in their hometown.

From 1926 to 1951, the city had a municipal pool for white residents only. African Americans often swam in the Potomac River or on Hunting Creek for relief on hot summer days. Although the city provided transportation to a swimming pool in Washington, D.C. once a week during this time, this was not enough for some African American youth; walking two or three blocks to the Potomac River or Hunting Creek was too tempting to pass up.

As a result, accidents and drownings were bound to happen, and did. The Charles Houston Recreation Center Pool is named "The Memorial Pool" in honor of African American youth who perished in the Potomac and local creeks during segregation, when they were not permitted to use the city pool.

In 1952, the city opened the Johnson Memorial Pool, named for two brothers who had drowned the year before, for African American residents to use.

Dedicated February 27, 2010
HM NumberHM1J6P
Year Placed2010
Placed ByCity of Alexandria
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Monday, February 16th, 2015 at 1:02pm PST -08:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18S E 322166 N 4297990
Decimal Degrees38.81275000, -77.04821667
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 38° 48.765', W 77° 2.893'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds38° 48' 45.9" N, 77° 2' 53.58" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)202, 703, 571
Which side of the road?Marker is on the right when traveling West
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 901 Wythe St, Alexandria VA 22314, US
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