I used to visit the Dubliner, at the corner of Massachusetts Ave. and North Capitol St. frequently during my Capitol Hill drinking days. Holding my pint of Smithwicks, I used to glance around at the patrons and the neighborhood.
Right across F St. NW from the Dubliner’s patio is a small one-story building that I always thought looked completely out of place, surrounded by nine-story square modern office buildings or colonnaded Beaux Arts monuments. I always thought this nice looking building survived the demolition of the rest of the surrounding early 20th century neighborhood because the odd-shaped triangle it stood on defied maximization of space for a decent ROI in a modern building. You know how these developers think–bucks first, history later.
Today, that small stone-clad grey building is a SunTrust bank branch. But the building, built in 1926 by the same architect who designed New York’s Chrysler Building, has a very interesting past. It was one of Washington’s first experiments in fast food restaurants, among other uses during its decades of utilitarian existence.
Read about it here, “Lost Fast Food: Childs Restaurants in Washington.”