The winter garden: Center Market

Center Market, Washington, D.C., February 18, 1915, via National ArchivesForced azaleas, forsythias, and bulbs at a flower stand, February 18, 1915, by U.S. Department of Agriculture, via U.S. National Archives Commons on flickr.

Center Market was located at 7th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C., where the National Archives building now stands. The red brick German Renaissance Revival structure was built between 1872 and 1878 (replacing an 1801 market). It held over 700 vendors in its halls and courtyard and was possibly the country’s largest market building.

Center Market, Washington, D.C., February 18, 1915, via National Archives

The Market closed in 1931, a victim of the rise of community chain stores and increased availability of canned and frozen foods — as well as the McMillan Commission‘s vision for a white marble, neoclassical center for the capital city.

Center Market, Washington, D.C., February 18, 1915, via National Archives

There are more photos of Center Market here and a more complete history here.  Click on any photo above to enlarge it.

The winter garden: the White House

Violet house section of the White House conservatory, early 1900s, by Barnett McFee Clinedinst
The violet house section of the White House conservatory, early 1900s, by Barnett McFee Clinedinst

Wouldn’t it be nice to have a whole greenhouse devoted to growing violets for the house during the cold weather months?

Or orchids and palms?

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Frances Benjamin Johnston took the above photographs (except one) in 1889 and 1890.

Or azaleas?

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

A large conservatory complex occupied the west side of the White House from 1857. . .

The White House and conservatory in 1857 by Lewis Emory Walker.
The White House and conservatory in 1857 by Lewis Emory Walker.

until 1902, when the West Wing was built.

The greenhouses in 1889 by Frances Benjamin Johnston.
The greenhouses in 1889 by Frances Benjamin Johnston.

All photos above via Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division.

Four more winter gardens are here.

The perfect loveliness that God has made,—
Wild violets shy and Heaven-mounting dreams.

Alice Moore Dunbar-Nelson, from “Sonnet

Think pink

Pink azaleas in Rockefeller Center, NYC, 1945, Gottscho-Schlieisner Collection, Library of Congress:enclos*ure“Rockefeller Center, New York City, planted with azaleas,” April 1945, by Gottscho-Schleisner, Inc., via Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division.

S’wonderful!

Pink azaleas in Rockefeller Center, NYC, 1945, Gottscho-Schlieisner Collection, Library of Congress:enclos*ureSamuel Herman Gottscho worked as a traveling lace and fabric salesman before becoming a commercial photographer at the age of 50. He specialized in architecture, but also regularly contributed to New York Times articles on wildflowers.  He was awarded the New York Botanical Garden’s Distinguished Service Medal in 1967 for his photographs of plants.

The Library of Congress holds 29,000 of his images in the Gottscho-Schleisner Collection (William Schleisner was his son-in-law and partner).