Lift Every Voice: Georgia Ave./Pleasant Plains Heritage Trail Lift Every Voice: Georgia Ave./Pleasant Plains Heritage Trail


Countless dreams and memories reside in this stretch of Georgia Avenue. Follow Lift Every Voice: Georgia Ave./Pleasant Plains Heritage Trail to relive the heyday of Seventh and T Streets, NW, and the Howard Theatre. Make the acquaintance of the musicians and impresarios, shop-keepers and barbers, intellectuals and activists, and all who built a thriving community along one of Washington's oldest thoroughfares.

Georgia Avenue once was known as the Seventh Street Turnpike. It was built to extend Seventh Street, which started at Washington's Southwest wharves, ran to its main market square Downtown, and continued to where, until 1871, the city ended at Boundary Street, today's Florida Avenue. The turnpike ran deep into Maryland, and carried farmers to markets, Civil War soldiers to battle, and President Lincoln to his summer home.

As you walk Lift Every Voice: Georgia Ave./Pleasant Plains Heritage Trail you'll find 19 poster-sized street signs combining storytelling with historic photographs and maps. The first sign is at Seventh and S Streets, NW, just outside the Shaw/Howard University Metro Station on Metro's Green Line.

The two-hour, self-guided tour follows Seventh Street/Georgia Avenue, with a couple of detours, to the Georgia Ave-Petworth Green Line Metro Station at the intersection of Georgia and New Hampshire Avenues, NW. As always, you may start your tour at any point along the trail. If you prefer to walk downhill, start at Sign 19.

As you explore, don't miss the neighborhood's businesses and restaurants, mostly one-of-a-kind establishments. 

For more information, email us at or call 202-355-4280.


Lift Every Voice: Georgia Ave./Pleasant Plains Heritage Trail  tells the stories of the portion of the thoroughfare that starts just south of Florida Avenue and ends some 20 blocks north. The trail passes through four distinct neighborhoods. It starts in Shaw, then enters Pleasant Plains at Florida Avenue, passes through Park View north of Howard University, and ends in Petworth.

Explore these neighborhood highlights:
• The Howard Theatre, which opened in 1910 as the nation's first major theater built for African Americans 

• Howard University, founded in 1867 to educate youth "in the liberal arts and sciences"

• The boardinghouse where novelist and anthropologist Zora Neale Hurston lived while a student at Howard University

• Georgia Avenue's "Nile Valley"

• Buildings that once housed Wonder Bread and other bakeries



Download the trail map PDF.
Download the trail guidebook PDF.
Download the Spanish-language trail guidebook PDF.


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