Washington DC History Resources

Matthew B. Gilmore

Arlington County House History Research Guide

A while back I had the opportunity to work on some Arlington County house history research. The resources in Arlington have their familiar analogs (in some part) with those in Washington DC but the information is much more straightforward in the County

Arlington House History Research Diagram [PDF]–click to download

The links from above:

NEW (June 2016):

Historical House Cards

Arlington County’s newly digitized collection of “house cards” offers easy, online access to some of the history and physical evolution of nearly every building in our community. All you need is a street name and/or block number to start your hunt.
When the County’s first Building Code was adopted in 1935, a system was created of using customized index cards to record a structure’s builder, subdivision and alterations large and small. If a homeowner installed “asphalt shingles over present roof” on Oct. 16, 1959, it was noted. If a “12’ x 9’ screened-in” back porch was added mid-April 1968, it was recorded. House cards also served as official “death” certificates. A scrawled “DEMOLISHED” is often the last word on an isolated tear down or a neighborhood bisection in advance of I-66.

Street name changes

Find it online – Property Search:


Online Census resources

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


This entry was posted on May 13, 2015 by in Arlington County history, History, House history and tagged , .
%d bloggers like this: