Then and Now: 2121 Massachusetts Ave., NW
History: The mansion in its current state was created when Mrs. Townsend had the original 1873 home of Curtis Hillyer enlarged and so completely rebuild that none of the original structure is noticeable. To do this, she hired a leading New York firm, Carrère and Hastings. The work began in 1899 and was essentially completed by 1901.
Mrs. Townsend became one of Washington’s social leaders, known for her elegant entertaining. Her husband, Richard H. Townsend, died shortly after the house was completed, but she continue to live there until her death in 1931.
Mrs. Townsend’s only child, Mathilde Townsend Welles, and her husband, B. Sumner Welles, President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s Under Secretary of State (from 1934 to 1943), lived in the mansion until World War II when it was leased to the Canadian Women’s Army Corps.
This entry was posted on July 6, 2009 at 2:01 pm and is filed under Dupont Circle, Then and Now with tags Dupont Circle, historic comparison, social clubs. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.