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A Community Exploring Its Past

While most Americans probably think of Capitol Hill as simply the site of the U.S. Capitol, those who live here know it as an old and thriving residential neighborhood, a small town within a large city. The Overbeck Project captures the history of this community by recording the recollections of its longtime residents and preserving other records of its fascinating past.

Project volunteers collect and transcribe interviews for posting on this site. We also sponsor a highly successful lecture series exploring our city's history. We urge you too to get involved in this exciting effort, sponsored by the Capitol Hill Community Foundation.

Four New Transcripts Bring Total to 173

As of November, 2014, four additional transcripts have been added to the Overbeck Project website.

Two of the four interviews were done within the last year and a half: a 2013 interview with Grover Batts, a Capitol Hill resident since 1959, who described his very interesting work for the manuscript division of the Library of Congress and his life in this walkable neighborhood; and a 2014 interview with Albert S. Turner, who reminisced about growing up surrounded by family in the 1200 block of G Street SE in the 1930s and 40s and about his sequential careers with the telephone company and the Capitol Police force.

The other two newly posted transcripts represent much older interviews: a 1977 interview with Dr. Herbert Ramsey, a 1912 graduate of Eastern High School who focused on alumni from that school; and a short summary of a 1974 conversation with Minnie Lee White, a close friend of the woman who sculpted the suffragette statue now in the Capitol Rotunda.

These latter two documents complete our four year effort to make public ten interviews done in the 1970s. We think they are a true treasure: a peek into the lives of people born in the late 19th century or very early 20th century, many of whose families had been in the neighborhood even longer. Collectively, these provide names and addresses all over Capitol Hill because of the deliberate effort in the 70s to focus on all geographic parts of the Hill.

The Overbeck Project realizes we'll never be able to interview all potential candidates, so we're delighted to incorporate other pertinent interviews into our collection; links to material already available elsewhere on the Internet are of particular interest. Readers are encouraged to send us suggestions.

A listing of all 28 transcripts added since May, 2013, appears here. Altogether, 173 full transcripts are available on this website.

Other News and Reminders 

1947 Photos Donated to the Overbeck Project

1967 Drawing Donated to the Overbeck Project

Were You There? Remembering the 1963 March on Washington

301 East Capitol Street: Tales from the Heart of the Hill

  Photo courtesy of the Historical Society of Washington, D.C. Not to be reproduced without permission.
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The Ruth Ann Overbeck Capitol Hill History Project, Washington, D.C.