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North Brentwood, Maryland
Official seal of North Brentwood, Maryland
Location of North Brentwood, Maryland
Location of North Brentwood, Maryland
Coordinates: 38°56′39″N 76°57′6″W / 38.94417°N 76.95167°W / 38.94417; -76.95167Coordinates: 38°56′39″N 76°57′6″W / 38.94417°N 76.95167°W / 38.94417; -76.95167
Country  United States of America
State  Maryland
County Prince George's
Incorporated June 12, 1924
 • Total 0.11 sq mi (0.29 km2)
 • Land 0.11 sq mi (0.29 km2)
 • Water 0.00 sq mi (0.00 km2)
10 ft (3 m)
 • Total 517
 • Estimate 
 • Density 4,876.11/sq mi (1,884.67/km2)
Time zone UTC-5 (Eastern (EST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC-4 (EDT)
ZIP code
Area code(s) 301, 240
FIPS code 24-56375
GNIS feature ID 0597814

North Brentwood is a town in Prince George's County, Maryland, United States. The population was 517 at the 2010 census. The municipality of North Brentwood is located north of Washington and is surrounded by the communities of Brentwood, Hyattsville, and Cottage City, and the nearby Mount Rainier. The Town of North Brentwood was incorporated in 1924, and was the first African-American-majority municipality in Maryland.


19th century

The town is named after the Brentwood estate built in 1817 by Robert Brent in Northeast Washington, D.C. The town was originally settled by African-American veterans of the American Civil War, who purchased lots from their former commander, Capt. Wallace A. Bartlett, beginning in 1887.

The town was developed beginning in the 1890s around the Highland Station of the Washington Branch of the B & O Railroad and the Columbia and Maryland Railway. "Brentwood" was created by Wallace A. Bartlett, a Civil War veteran, former foreman for the Government Printing Office, Patent Office examiner, and inventor originally from Warsaw, New York. Captain Bartlett lived in Washington, D.C., until 1887, when he purchased 206 acres (0.83 km2) of farmland from Benjamin Holliday, which abutted the Highland subdivision. Bartlett built a farmhouse for his family on the land and, with two partners J. Lee Adams and Samuel J. Mills, formed the Holladay Land and Improvement Company.

In 1891, the Company platted a residential subdivision called "Holladay Company's Addition to Highland" on 80 acres (320,000 m2) of the Bartlett Farm. The lots were approximately 40 feet (12 m) by 100 feet (30 m) and were arranged around an irregular grid of streets. The lots in the northern part of the subdivision, which eventually would become North Brentwood, were smaller and were subject to flooding from a mill race. The first lots in the northern section were purchased in 1891 by Henry Randall, an African-American man from Anne Arundel County, who built a house on Holladay Avenue (now Rhode Island Avenue). In 1894, Randall's son, Peter Randall, constructed a house next to his father's. More family members moved into the community and built homes, and the area soon became known as Randallstown.

Other African-American families soon moved to the neighborhood, including the Plummer, Wallace, and Johnson families. They built two-story front-gable frame houses, as well as free-standing rowhouses. In 1898, the City and Suburban Railway was completed through Randallstown. By 1904 that name had been replaced by Brentwood. In the early 1900s, the development of Randallstown out-paced development in the southern areas also platted by Bartlett. A school and a church were built in 1904, and the Brentwood Colored Citizens Association was formed in 1907. The association helped acquire volunteers for a fire company, fire-fighting equipment, a community hall, and electric lights. After Bartlett's neighboring development was incorporated as the town of Brentwood in 1922, Jeremiah Hawkins pushed for the incorporation of North Brentwood.


In April 1924, Delegate Charles B. Ager sponsored a bill to incorporate North Brentwood. The bill proposed an mayor, three council members, and a treasurer, all popularly elected. The bill passed the House of Delegates. The bill was put up to a vote of the proposed town's residents on June 12, 1924, and it passed.

At the time of its incorporation, North Brentwood was the first municipality in Maryland, and possibly the United States, without any white voters.

First election

The town held its first election on July 7, 1924.

Republican Jeremiah Hawkins ran unopposed for the town's first mayor. Peter Randall and Frank Baden ran for Council member representing ward one. Horace Allen ran unopposed to represent ward two on the Council. Julius Wheeler and Joseph L. Gordan ran for Council member representing ward three. Mahlia Brown and John Gilmore ran for treasurer.

Hawkins, Randall, Allen, Wheeler, and Gilmore were all elected as the town's first elected government.


The town continued to grow after incorporation. In September 1924, the town's first school, a three-room schoolhouse, was built.

During the 1930s and 1940s, new homes were built, mostly bungalows and brick Cape Cod houses. New streets were laid out, while the existing streets were paved, extended, and renamed.

Historic sites

The following is a list of historic sites in North Brentwood identified by the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission. Much of the community is located within the North Brentwood Historic District; listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2003.

Site name Image Location M-NCPPC Inventory Number Comment
1 African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church of Brentwood 4037 Webster Street 68-61-11
2 Mack Brown House 3907 Wallace Road 68-61-4
3 Foursquares on Webster Street 3914, 3916, and 3918 Webster Street 68-61-13
4 Jeremiah Hawkins House Site 4114 Webster Street 68-61-1 Demolished in 1991.
5 Edith Mason House 4501 41st Avenue 68-61-8
6 McKenzie-Bullock House Site 4538 41st Avenue 68-61-9 Demolished in 1992 following fire.
7 Nelson-Queen House Site 4505 Church Street 68-61-10 Demolished in 1993 to allow for expansion of Town Hall.
8 Henry Newton House 4502 Church Street 68-61-12
9 Robert Orr House 4528 40th Street 68-61-2
10 Owings Houses 4533, 4535, and 4537 41st Avenue 68-61-5
11 A.A. Randall House 4504 41st Avenue 68-61-7
12 Peter Randall House 4508 Rhode Island Avenue 68-61-37 Built in 1892, it is the oldest dwelling in North Brentwood.
13 Seaburn House 4529 41st Avenue 68-61-6
14 William H. Thomas House 3911 Wallace Road 68-61-3


North Brentwood is located at 38°56′39″N 76°57′6″W / 38.94417°N 76.95167°W / 38.94417; -76.95167 (38.944111, -76.951650).

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 0.10 square miles (0.26 km2), all of it land.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1930 641
1940 822 28.2%
1950 838 1.9%
1960 864 3.1%
1970 758 −12.3%
1980 568 −25.1%
1990 512 −9.9%
2000 469 −8.4%
2010 517 10.2%
2019 (est.) 551 6.6%
U.S. Decennial Census

2010 census

As of the census of 2010, there were 517 people, 167 households, and 123 families residing in the town. The population density was 5,170.0 inhabitants per square mile (1,996.1/km2). There were 183 housing units at an average density of 1,830.0 per square mile (706.6/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 13.3% White, 63.6% African American, 0.4% Native American, 1.7% Asian, 16.2% from other races, and 4.6% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 34.0% of the population.

There were 167 households, of which 39.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 38.3% were married couples living together, 26.3% had a female householder with no husband present, 9.0% had a male householder with no wife present, and 26.3% were non-families. 21.0% of all households were made up of individuals, and 6.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.10 and the average family size was 3.49.

The median age in the town was 36.4 years. 26.1% of residents were under the age of 18; 7.9% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 28.3% were from 25 to 44; 25.7% were from 45 to 64; and 12% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the town was 49.7% male and 50.3% female.

Arts District

Located along the Route 1 Corridor, North Brentwood formed the Gateway Arts District along with its neighboring municipalities of Brentwood, Hyattsville, and Mount Rainier.

North Brentwood is home to the Prince George's African-American Museum and Cultural Center.


North Brentwood is within the Prince George's County Public Schools district.

  • Northwestern High School

During the era of legally-required racial segregation of schools, black students from North Brentwood attended Lakeland High School in College Park in the period 1928–1950; Fairmont Heights High School, then near Fairmount Heights, replaced Lakeland High and served black students only from 1950 to 1964; around 1964 legally-required racial segregation of schools ended.


2019-06-11 12 21 47 View south along U.S. Route 1 (Rhode Island Avenue) just south of the Northwest Branch of the Anacostia River in North Brentwood, Prince George's County, Maryland
US 1 southbound entering North Brentwood

The only highway serving North Brentwood is U.S. Route 1. US 1 connects southward to Brentwood, Mount Rainier and Washington, D.C., while to the north, it passes through Hyattsville and College Park before intersecting Interstate 95/Interstate 495 (the Capital Beltway).

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