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C&P Telephone Building (Verizon) Washington, D. C.

  • Name: Cleveland-Emerson Exchange
  • Year Built: 1907-08 Original; Replaced 1926; 1st addition 1931-32; 2nd addition, 1960
  • Architect: Eidlitz & McKenzie, Original; McKenzie, Voorhees & Gmelin, 1st addition; Waddy Wood, 2nd addition
  • Built By: John McGregor, Original; S.J. Prescott & Co., 1st addition

The existing building sits on the site of the first (1907-1908) telephone exchange building in Tenleytown and consists of three phases of development: 1927;1931-32 and circa 1960.

The growth of telephone subscribers from 896 in 1883 to over 40,000 by 1905 prompted C&P to expand its downtown headquarters and also to construct several branch buildings.

The Cleveland exchange, named for President Grover Cleveland, was established to serve Tenleytown and Cleveland Park.

Initially the Cleveland Exchange operated out of private homes but in 1907-8 the first purpose-built Cleveland exchange building was erected on the present site.

In 1926-27 to accommodate the increasing number of subscribers, a new buff brick building was built to the rear of the original building. Two of the walls of this second building are still evident.

The transition from manual to dial occasioned another building expansion which replaced the 1907-08 building and was built in front of the 1926 addition.

Built in two stages, the building was finally completed circa 1962.

Built of smooth-cut limestone-clad brick, with stripped classical massing, it has Art Deco detailing in front of and abutting the earlier buff brick Classical Revival-style Exchange building.

(Listed in the DC Inventory of Historic Sites, 2016)


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