Over the centuries, groups ranging from Native American traders to freedmen and freedwomen to the U.S. military have all found a home on this hilly land along the Anacostia River. Follow this trail to reflect on Anacostia's many facets and savor the best views in the city!
Anacostia is a study in contrasts. Today's neighborhood started as two 19th-century villages, one white and one African American, that remained separate for a century. The mid-20th century brought great upheaval, still playing out in the 21st century.
Walk along An East-of-the-River View: Anacostia Heritage Trail (click here for map) to understand this dramatic story. Visitors can learn more about Frederick Douglass and villains such as John Wilkes Booth amid a once-bucolic landscape that has witnessed life-and-death struggle and the everyday events of an evolving neighborhood.
The ribbon-cutting for this new trail took place Saturday, October 24, 2015 at 11am near the Big Chair, Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue and V Street, SE.
Anacostia Heritage Trail begins on the corner of Shannon Place and Howard Road by the Green Line Metro station. The two-mile path is punctuated by 20 signs—mostly along Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue and Good Hope Road—whose historical markers and old photographs reveal the origins and development of the neighborhood. Following the trail will lead you to the Douglass home along with other community mainstays—such as a circa-1940s neon ANACOSTIA sign (on a vacant building at the corner of Good Hope Road and Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue)—and trivia including John Wilkes Booth's escape route over the Navy Yard Bridge through Historic Anacostia (then called Uniontown) after he shot President Lincoln.
Download the map below: