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Memorial Continental Hall
Memorial Continental Hall.JPG
Location 1776 D Street NW,
Washington, D.C.
Built 1904–1910
Architect Edward Pearce Casey
Architectural style Georgian revival
NRHP reference No. 72001427
Designated NHL November 28, 1972

The Memorial Continental Hall in Washington, D.C. is the national headquarters of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR). It is located at 1776 D Street NW, sharing a city block with the DAR's Administration Building was built in 1920, and Constitution Hall. Completed in 1910, it is the oldest of the three buildings. It was the site of the 1922 Washington Naval Conference, a major diplomatic event in the aftermath of World War I. The building was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1972.

Description

Memorial Continental Hall occupies the eastern third of the city block bounded by C and D, 17th and 18th Streets NW, on the west side of the Ellipse near the White House. It is a two-story masonry structure, built out of brick and concrete whose exterior is clad in Vermont marble with Georgian revival features. Its three street-facing elevations all have monumental two-story porticos with Doric columns. The principal entrance, facing east toward 17th Street and the Ellipse, is extended to function as a porte cochere, with a drive passing under it. The south portico is semi-circular, with thirteen columns.

History

Memorial Continental Hall was commissioned by the DAR in 1902 to be used as a headquarters, assembly hall, and meeting place for DAR conferences. Architect Edward Pearce Casey designed the building, and construction occurred between 1904 and 1910. It was the first of three DAR buildings erected on the same site. The nearby Administration Building was built in 1920, and Constitution Hall was built at the opposite end of the site in 1929. The Administration Building was expanded in 1950 to unite all three buildings.

The final act of the 1913 Woman Suffrage Procession, initiated by Alice Paul, was a meeting at the Memorial Continental Hall. Speakers were Anna Howard Shaw, Carrie Chapman Catt, Mary Johnston, and Helen Adams Keller.

Memorial Continental Hall was the site of the Washington Naval Conference in 1921-22, a major diplomatic meeting in which the major powers of the world agreed to limit the sizes and capabilities of their naval forces. The hall was loaned to the American Red Cross in 1943 for emergency wartime work. In 1949, the stage in the auditorium was removed and the room was converted to a library.

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