Rosemont in the 1900s

  • The May 6, 1908 edition of the Star reported on the chartering of the Alexandria Realty Company, with R.A. Chester as president, R.W. King as secretary, and D.B. Henderson also as an officer. The May 9, 1908 edition of the Star noted that the company “recently purchased Spring Park.”
  • What may be the first mention of “Rosemont” appears in the June 10, 1908 edition of the Washington Times, which reported that the Alexandria Realty Company had requested that the City gas mains be extended to Rosemont. A similar report appeared in the June 10, 1908 edition of the Star.
  • The June 11, 1908 edition of the Post reported that the Alexandria Realty Company plans “in the near future, begin the construction of a number of attractive houses” in the area formerly known as Spring Park, and that the company has requested that the city gas mains be extended to Rosemont.
  • The June 15, 1908 edition of the Gazette included a classified ad seeking a “[l]aboring man and man who can furnish horses and carts to work on the opening of streets and laying of sewers in Rosemont (formerly Spring Park) opposite Alexandria Union Station. Apply on premises.”
  • The June 20, 1908 edition of the Star reported that “a number of capitalists have purchased a tract of land which fronts both on the steam road tracks and on those of the electric road between this city and Alexandria and there they intend to found a town. … It is going to start out, it is claimed, as a full-fledged place with water and sewer and light as well as sidewalks, and moreover the company proposes to build houses so that all that will be necessary for future citizens to do is to buy them and settle down to enjoy home life under what it is said will be favorable conditions.”
  • The June 24, 1908 edition of the Post reported that the City Council had adopted a report recommending that the company pay for the pipes, with the understanding that the City would purchase the pipes when the net revenue reached $180 per year. A similar report appeared in the June 24, 1908 editions of the Herald and the Star. The June 24, 1908 edition of the Gazette indicated that the vote was 12-0.
  • The June 26, 1908 edition of the Post reported that the “Rosemont” station on the Washington, Alexandria and Mount Vernon Electric Railway had been established the previous day (at the corner of Rosemont Avenue). A similar report appeared in the June 26, 1908 edition of the Gazette.
  • The June 27, 1908 edition of the Star reported that work had begun on grading streets in Rosemont. “Sidewalks and gutters are to be put down, and also sewers and water mains, and next fall it is expected that at least 400 trees will be set out. It is stated that no fences except hedge fences will be permitted. It is also further announced that the Rosemont Development Company has given to contractors plans and specifications fro a number of attractive houses, and in the very near future building operations will begun in earnest. … Plans for a railroad station to be located on the property have been prepared and the building is to be erected immediately.”
  • The first ad promoting Rosemont appeared in the June 27, 1908 edition of the Washington Star – but unlike many ads to follow in the next few years, it did not emphasize the name of F.L. Slaymaker (although since it appeared in a Washington instead of an Alexandria publication, it may not have assumed that his name would be known).
  • The July 1, 1908 edition of the Gazette featured the first of many display ads promoting Rosemont by F.L. Slaymaker, directing interested purchasers to his office at 313 King Street.
  • The July 15, 1908 edition of the Gazette reported that the City Council approved an agreement with the Alexandria Realty Co. to extend the City gas mains to the corporate line closest to Rosemont. A similar report appeared in the July 15, 1908 edition of the Star. The agreement subsequently was published in the July 21, 1908 edition of the Gazette.
  • The July 21, 1908 edition of the Post reported that Company G of the Seventieth Virginia Regiment would the following night camp in Rosemont, “on the western outskirts of the city,” before departing for Georgia. The July 21, 1908 edition of the Gazette reported that the bivouac had been cancelled.
  • The August 24, 1908 edition of the Gazette reported that water mains were being laid in Rosemont.
  • The September 1, 1908 edition of the Gazette reported that S.D. DeVaughn had been awarded the contract for the first house in Rosemont, a two-story brick dwelling to cost between $4,000 and $5,000. The same edition also reported that work on gas mains, sidewalks, and sewers would begin upon completion of work by the Alexandria Water Company.
  • The September 12, 1908 edition of the Gazette reported that the Alexandria County Board of Supervisors considered plans for improvements outside the Alexandria City limits near Rosemont, including the vitrification of King Street and the widening of the bridge over Hooff’s Run. Mr. Chester, President of the Rosemont Company was in attendance.
  • The September 19, 1908 edition of the Gazette reported that S.D. DeVaughn would in the next week begin construction of three brick homes in Rosemont. A similar report appeared in the September 20, 1908 edition of the Washington Times. The September 22, 1908 edition of the Gazette reported that Frank L. Slaymaker intended to reside in one of them, “showing his faith in the future of the property.”
  • The September 29, 1908 edition of the Post reported that a charter had been issued for the Rosemont Development Company; the incorporators were C.I. Robinson of Washington, President; J.W. Rich of Ballston, Secretary and Treasurer; and F.L. Neubeck, of Washington. Similar reports appeared in the September 28, 1908 edition of the Gazette and the September 29, 1908 editions of the Washington Times and the Star.
  • The October 5, 1908 edition of the Gazette reported that Samuel Devaughn had broken ground on the first three houses, as well as that architect Milton Dana Morrill had “resigned his position as designer in the government service and expects to devote his entire time to his profession.” The article added that these three buildings “will be rushed to completion before cold weather.”
  • The October 13, 1908 edition of the Gazette reported that Mr. R.H. Chester, former First Vice President of the Commercial National Bank, was having plans drawn for a residence in Rosemont, as was Mr. Wm. M. Reardon, Jr. The article added that there had been “several unavoidable delays” in making improvements, but that the gas, sewers, and sidewalks were expected to be installed before winter weather arrived.
  • The December 31, 1908 edition of the Gazette reported that 900 feet of 12-inch water mains and 3,838 feet of 4-inch water mains had been laid in Rosemont.
  • The March 8, 1909 edition of the Post reported that a body had been found about 100 yards the Rosemont station, later identified as Walter F. Schultz, an artist from Chicago. An article in the March 16, 1909 edition of the Post reported that four men had been arrested; an article in the March 19, 1909 edition of the Post reported that they had been moved to Fairfax, to prevent them from being lynched. Subsequently, all were convicted and the ringleader was executed, according to a report in the June 4, 1910 edition of the Post. Many other articles in the Herald, Post, Star, Washington Times, and Gazette also reported on the story.
  • The March 8, 1909 edition of the Gazette reported that work was continuing to extend gas mains to Rosemont.
  • The March 24, 1909 edition of the Post reported that the Rosemont Development Company had requested that the City Council make changes to the gas main contract previously negotiated by the Alexandria Realty Company, including the size of the mains. A similar report appeared in the March 24, 1909 edition of the Star.
  • The April 4, 1909 edition of the Post reported that a station and waiting room would be built at Rosemont Station by the Washington, Alexandria and Mount Vernon Electric Railway, designed by the architects Vogt & Morrill and built by J.F. Rogers. “The building will be entirely of concrete, with the exception of the roof, which will be shingled. The roof will overhang from the face of the building and will be supported by ornamental brackets. The windows will be of the French casement type, and will be glazed with diamond-shaped panes. The waiting room will be heated by electricity.” A similar report appeared in the March 30, 1909 edition of the Gazette.
  • The May 8, 1909 edition of the Gazette reported that “Rosemont is beginning to look very beautiful, with its new artistic station building near completion and its sidewalks and sodded terraces all in order. The work on the gas mains was finished this week, and the sewer plant will be completed next week. When all the houses will be occupied by their owners, and when the six new houses to he started next week get under way, Rosemont will begin to look very much like a part of the city.”
  • The May 18, 1909 edition of the Gazette reported that Messrs. Leenjel, contractors and builders, of Philadelphia would erect a number of buildings for the Rosemont Development Company.
  • The May 19, 1909 edition of the Gazette reported that work on started on five new houses and that the $1,500 railway station would be ready for use the next week. The article added that Mr. D.J. Howell was in charge of the engineering works for Rosemont.
  • The May 19, 1909 edition of the Star reported that six houses had been completed in Rosemont and construction on six more was to begin within the week.
  • The June 3, 1909 edition of the Gazette reported that construction on three additional houses would begin with the next two weeks, including for Mr. E.H. Kemper, Assistant Comptroller of the Southern Railway. Mr. A.J. Pohl and Mr. F.L. Slaymaker were reported to have moved into their houses. Additionally, all underground work was reported to have been completed; a night watchman was on duty; and arrangements were being made for the installation of electric street lights.
  • The June 12, 1909 edition of the Star reported that three houses had been built in Rosemont and plans were nearing completion for the construction of five more within the next few months. A similar report appeared in the June 18, 1909 edition of the Star.
  • The June 24, 1909 edition of the Gazette reported that a contract had been signed for the construction of a house for Mr. E.H. Kemper just west of Mount Vernon Avenue (as Russell Road in Rosemont was then known) on Rosemont Avenue, adjoining Mr. Slaymaker’s residence. Mr. Milton Dana Morrill was to be the architect and Mr. S.D. DeVaughan the contractor, with completion expected by early fall. The article added that Rosemont Station, designed by the same architect, was now complete and would be occupied within a few days.
  • The June 30, 1909 edition of the Gazette reported that in the fiscal year ending May 31, 1909, 2,656 feet of 6-inch gas mains and 2,124 feet of 4-inch gas main were laid in Rosemont.
  • The July 10, 1909 edition of the Gazette reported that concrete work, parking, and window flower boxes had been completed at Rosemont Station, as well as that Mr. W.E. Dienelt, Jr. was now associated with Rosemont and would be on the property the entire day, making his headquarters at the station building.
  • The July 30, 1909 and July 31, 1909 editions of the Gazette reported that the Wright Brothers had made a demonstration flight for the Army from Fort Myer to Shooter’s Hill (today the site of the George Washington Masonic Memorial) and back. (T he route of this flight would have passed over Rosemont)
  • The August 2, 1909 edition of the Gazette reported that dwellings were being built in Rosemont by Mr. E.H. Kemper, Mr. Roger Adams, and Mr. James Deane.
  • The August 19, 1909 edition of the Gazette reported that the platform and steps of Rosemont Station had been completed, leaving only planting and street surfacing to be done within the next few weeks, as well as that four of the eight houses under construction were now under roof, and that a lot on Rosemont Avenue had been sold to Mr. Lindsay A. Howard.
  • The September 5, 1909 edition of the Post reported that the Alexandria Electric Company would soon supply current to Rosemont.
  • The September 25, 1909 edition of the Gazette reported that contractor J.D. Lengel had broken ground on five additional houses in Rosemont. Similar reports appeared in the September 25, 1909 edition of the Washington Times and the September 26, 1909 edition of the Star.
  • The September 29, 1909 edition of the Gazette reported that in addition to the three houses completed in the spring and occupied, eight additional houses were nearing completion, and the five houses on which work had begun would be completed by spring.
  • The October 7, 1909 edition of the Gazette reported that Rosemont Station now had electric lights around its roof, and “at night presents a beautiful fairy like effect, and illuminates the eastern end of the subdivision.” The article added that gas street light, electric wires for house current, and telephone cable would be installed within a few weeks, and that the gravelling of the street would begin the next week.
  • The October 29, 1909 edition of the Gazette reported that men and rollers were at work in Rosemont laying gravel, as well as digging holes for plating maples trees. Contracts for street lighting and electric service for the houses would soon be closed, and a telephone cable installed. Mr. E.H. Kemper and Mr. James Deane were expected to occupy their homes within a week. The November 6, 1909 edition of the gazette reported that Mr. E.H. Kemper had occupied his house, and the November 16, 1909 edition of the Gazette reported that Mr. James Deane had occupied his house.
  • The November 27, 1909 edition of the Gazette reported that Mr. Alexander Suter, Secretary of the Rosemont Company, had returned from a trip to New York to arrange for the installation of street lamps, and that the Alexandria Electric Company had ordered the materials for wiring Rosemont.
  • The December 2, 1909 edition of the Star reported that “[a] force of engineers” was surveying Rosemont in preparation for the installation of electric lights. The December 26, 1909 edition of the Star reported that the poles were being installed.

 


15 West Cedar Street, c. 1909 (built for Mr. and Mrs. Ralph Goldsworthy, according to an article in the May 11, 1977 edition of the Packet; probably the first house completed in Rosemont):

15 West Cedar Street, c. 1909

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