Tudor Place Historic House & Garden
1644 31st Street NW, Washington, DC, USA
www.tudorplace.org - (202) 965-0400
Tudor Place Historic House & Garden Washington Reviews
A Grand Federal Residence overlooking Georgetown Mar 23, 2013
Tudor Place is a historic house in the Georgetown neighborhood of Washington, DC. On a sunny March weekend we decided to visit this house museum. It holds many surprises and stories.
Tudor Place is a Federal style mansion built in stages between 1797 and 1816. It was begun by Francis Lowndes as a townhouse and facing carriage house separated by a green space. (Not unlike the arrangement of Savannah houses we saw last year.) Thomas Peter and Martha Parke (Custis) Peter purchased the Georgetown Heights property in 1805. Martha was a granddaughter of Martha Washington and used her inheritance from George Washington (her step-grandfather) to buy the property. Hyphens (wings) were added later and the central hall added in 1816. The house passed to different members of the Peter family and was occupied until 1983.
The central main block of 1816 was designed by William Thornton in the Federal style. (He designed the United States Capitol and Woodlawn, the home of Martha's sister Nellie Lewis.)
The house is brick, covered with stucco to resemble limestone. The North facade is in a much plainer Federal style than the South facade. A dramatic addition to the South facade (which is the back of the house) is the Tempietto or Temple of Athena. The portico makes a full circle, half outside and half recessed inside the house. It is thought that Thornton was influenced by Donato Bramante's Tempietto at San Pietro in Montorio. (It also influenced Thornton's design for the U.S. Capitol.)
The house has been very well preserved. A tour takes visitors through the different rooms. Rooms are set up to represent different periods in the history of the house and the family. (The Peters were a socially prominent family and knew all the Presidents from George Washington to Ronald Reagan.) The elegant Hall, Drawing Room and Salon are set for the early 19th Century. The Kitchen is set in 1914 with a large half-coal, half-gas range. The functioning bathrooms are also set in 1914. The Study is set as Armistead Peter III, the last private owner of Tudor Place, left it in 1983.
Outside are a formal garden, a Japanese Teahouse, and the Garage where the Peter's 1919 Pierce Arrow is on display.
We enjoyed the tour and I learned facets of Washington history I had not known about before.
The house tour is $10. Interior photography is not permitted.
Part of the Inside Washington, DC travel blog
Part of the list Historic Houses
Part of the list Andy's Washington, DC
6 / 6 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!