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Embassy Row Walking Tour
From: 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM
The nouveau-riche crowd has made many an eyeball roll reflexively skyward. Call them robber barons or captains of industry, dub their heyday industrial or gilded, today we can revel in the Beaux-Arts grandeur of Washingtons Massachusetts Avenue, better known as Embassy Row. Well begin at Dupont Circle and introduce you to the families who decided to showcase their fortunes in the nations capital: members of the first ranks of mining, railroads, banking, publishing, politicians and speculators in the 1880s and 90s. Spendthrift offspring, the Great Depression and other misfortune eventually drained the resources of many families. Only 50 years later, embassies, clubs and other institutions were buying up their mansions for as little as 10 cents on a dollar.
In between, the high life and high architecture has made for some great stories. Alice Roosevelt Longworth delivered her famous line here If you dont have anything nice to say, sit next to me and spirited chum Evalyn Walsh McLean lived a few doors up where she kept the Hope Diamond.