I’ll be 90 this year.
Remember most of the things that are sent in.My mother was born at 633 D S. NW upstairs, cold water flat,
and out house in the alley. .My recollection includes using street car passes and throwing them out the window so that
the entire neighborhood gang could go downtown from Randolph St NW. Where did we go?
The Sunday paper would print play money in the comic strips and frequently the Senators would accept the play
money for kids to get into the ball park. Access in the Capitol was unlimited and one could casually open a door into an
active meeting room. Congress sessions were just about wide open. Anyone could climb all the way up to the top of the
dome. Left my signature up there. It could be done in the Washington Monument where there was a stone from every
state – and my initials on most of them.
Climbing into Rock Creek Park and running through the National Zoo were almost weekly past times.I remember
lying in my bed, looking out the open window on hot summer nights to watch the “Heat Lightning” and waiting for the call
from street vendors in horse and wagon selling their “Water melons – Ice Cold Watermelons”. Of course the real FREE
treat was the delivery guy for those who still had ice boxes for refrigeration.
Thank you so much for thinking to create such a marvelous resource and outlet. I loved going down memory
lane. I actually came across it when reading a discussion on facebook about a shoe store in Chevy Chase.
Memories were just flowing and it must have been a special store because I remembered going there and getting
my first pair of Capezios on Wisconsin Ave.
I was born in New York City but that was only because my parents were there for a short time. My mother went
to Central High and probably graduated in 1939. She is still alive and healthy at 93. She currently lives
independently in McLean.
We moved from New York in 1953 when I was two and lived in DC on 13th Street. My sister went to Coolidge
High--over time we moved again to apartments across from The Polar Bear on Georgia Ave. I remember it well.
Beyond that, we moved to Silver Spring on Apple Ave. & Second Street as my (single) mom worked in the
Guardian Federal Building and could walk to work for Buick Motor Division. Silver Spring was my stomping
ground when I wasn't attending Woodside Elementary. Some great memories of Silver Spring was Duck Pin
Bowling, The Roth & Silver Movie theater on Saturdays, Greens 5 & Dime where I could listen to new records,
and walk to my orthodontist, Dr. Donald Kaplan/Dr. Chasen, also in the Guardian Federal Building, The
Reindeer, Shanghai Restaurant (when the DC Transit ran through it) and Eddie Leonard's.
I remember that the GF Building was the tallest building until the Perpetual Building. I loved Gifford's and the Ice
Skating Rink not far, but I never had any money to go there so I would just watch the skaters from the street
through the windows.
I loved Pizza from a place in Montgomery Hills....Pizza Oven maybe on Georgia Ave???
Later, we moved to Four Corners and I went to Four Corners Elementary and Sligo Jr. High----then on to
Kensington where I graduated from Albert Einstein. I ended up at the University of MD where I finally graduated
in 1974. I loved my friends from all my neighborhoods and after I was married, we moved even
I met my husband in 1973 and we were married right after college. We will be married for 40 years this August
and have 3 grown sons and 3 grandchildren. We moved to Hampton Roads also known as Tidewater VA in
2008 and love having the city, the beach and little traffic. Our family still lives in the DC/Metro area.
One of my favorite stores as a child was Jelleff's and I was so happy that someone already mentioned that
store. It was the best and I always went there for my Easter outfit. Hahn's was the place for shoes.
Lastly and just to inject a little humor and a twist about how life turned out for me. I seemed to find that all of my
friends were either Jewish or Catholic in Silver Spring. Many of my Jewish friends had parents who discouraged
friendships because I was not a Jew. My Catholic friends all went to Catholic Schools----I was neither----so I
thought. In 2006, I was told that the man I thought was my father was not and that my real father was Jewish. I
became a Catholic at 21 and am half Jewish. Who knew? It is all good!!!
Thank you for the memories----
Jessica Morris Lombardi
I am 75 years old now and was born at Garfield Hospital in N.E. Washington in 1938. My first recollection of
growing up in D.C. was standing in food stamp lines with my grandmother at the elementary school during WWII.
Bread, butter and meats were rationed during the war and we lived on Hamilton Street near 3rd Street in N.W.
My biological father went to war in the Pacific with the Army and as a five or six year old WMAL radio station had
a program where children could come to the studio and cut a record which was sent to the soldiers. I sent him a
greeting. I remember that we had to have blue light bulbs for our lights because they could not be seen by
enemy airplanes. Of course no planes every flew over Washington, but what did we know?
When I was three years old, I remember being carried down our apartment steps by a taxi driver because
I couldn't walk and the dreaded word "polio" was whispered to the taxi driver. He took us to Walter Reed Hospital
between Georgia Ave. and 16th Street. Polio was the scare and everyone was afraid of it. I stayed for some time
and slowly my legs moved and I got better. But, I can remember some one by the name of Harry who was
crippled for life by the disease.
At about five or six, my mom a secretary for the Rubber Development Corporation, a wartime government
agency and I would walk two or three miles to the Petworth Library for story time. Radio shows were my fantasy
world and especially "Let's Pretend" and "The Shadow". Every Saturday afternoon we would listen to Texico's
Opera of the Week from the Met. in New York. By the time I was 8 years old I was taking the bus downtown to
Independence Ave and the Army Medical Museum, an old Quonset building where the Army had the old Iron
Lung. I was mesmerized by it.
Wiley's icecream store was my treat. Two bald headed German brothers owned the store and made ice
cream concoctions like the Washington Monument and Jefferson Memorial. Safeway store on Kennedy Street
was our grocery store and I loved to go there and wander the isles while Grandma shopped.
Like so many others a full day trip by public transportation to Glen Echo was a real treat for me and riding
the Ferris wheel and the bumper cars was great.
Going to the zoo became a favorite and later when I was in the fifth grade, Mom remarried and we moved
to Mt. Pleasant. Our backyard was Rock Creek Park and we could hear the animals at night. I made up all sorts
of stories about the noises and sometimes I was scared and hid under the covers.
I'll end for now, but continue if this gets accepted by this great archivist, Debi. Thanks for the memories.