—Diverse Visions, One Neighborhood —
Fire Fact, November 28, 1911
DC's first motorized fire engine was placed in service at Engine Company 24. Its engine house was the first to be built without a stable and manure pit.
Caption: Fire Department information and images courtesy of Capitol Fire Museum
Fire alarm boxes such as this one (originally painted red) were installed in the District after the Civil War. Telegraphs transmitted the box number (top) to a fire alarm center. This system was used until the 1970s when the boxes were converted to a telephone system. By the 1990s, the callbox system had been replaced by the 911 system and was abandoned.
After the Civil War,
the area around Dupont Circle developed rapidly. If you look north to the hill on the horizon, you can see where John and Mary Henderson built their mansion (1888). As a senator from Missouri, John (1836-1911) authored one of the anti-slavery amendments and voted against the removal of President Andrew Johnson. Mary (1841-1931) built the first "embassy row" between 2600 and 2800 16th St., and gave the Federal Government the land that became Meridian Hill Park, but only after she had tried strenuously to locate first the White House, then the Lincoln Memorial there.
At the northwest corner of 17th and P Sts. stood the
Syphax Mansion, home of descendants of slaves owned by Robert E. Lee's father-in-law at Arlington House. The Syphax family has been prominent in DC education. At 16th and P Sts. is the Foundry United Methodist Church (dedicated in 1904, pictured at left), where President and Mrs. Clinton were parishioners.
Artist, Supon Phornirunlit
Originally from Thailand, Supon came to the U.S.A. in 1979 and settled first in Dupont Circle. His design studio has earned over 1,000 industry awards. He has written nearly three dozen graphic design books.
Tour guide, map and artist information for all 22 boxes available at: www.DupontCircleCallBox.com
Art on Call
The Dupont Circle Art on Call project explores neighborhood history and local fire and police events. It also celebrates our diverse political, artistic and intellectual community by presenting original artwork by 22 local artists featuring the hub of our neighborhood. Dupont Circle and the beautiful fountains designed by Daniel Chester French.
Art on Call is a program of Cultural Tourism DC with support from
DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities
Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development
District Department of Transportation
box is sponsored by:
Dupont Circle Art on Call Corporate Sponsor
This community project also supported by
Dupont Circle Association and the Dupont Circle Conservancy, Inc.
and generous donations from community residents and businesses.
See all 22 Dupont Circle Call Boxes!
Development Committee Members:
Marilyn Newton, Chair
James H. Mears
Gerald Allen Schwinn
Tour guide, map and artist information available at: www.DupontCircleCallBox.com
Graphic design coursesy of: e-lanestudio
Fabrication: Gelberg Signs