Blog Post By Jona Elwell

D.C.’s Parks through the Ages: Banneker Recreation Center

It is a massive understatement to say that D.C. and its parks are full of history. While the National Mall is often the site of some of the largest and most memorable historical events, D.C.’s lesser-known but equally well-loved parks are also chocked full of history. 

While inventorying trees with the Urban Forestry Division and updating our Tree Inventory Map we realized that as we discovered, identified, and measured the history of a particular park’s trees, we could also learn about the dynamic history of D.C.’s parks. Couple that with our love of maps and data and voila – introducing our Park Storymaps. In the past, we looked at Lincoln Park, Fort Reno, and Logan Circle, and now we’re excited to show you beloved Banneker Recreation Center!

Banneker Recreation Center has a long history in the fabric of Washington’s African-American community. Serving as a haven for enlisted soldiers during World War II, a hub for black families during segregation, and the site of the nation’s first black pride festival, Banneker Recreation has been at the heart of many of D.C.’s social and political events. Today, it is one of the city’s most popular recreation centers and home to over 120 trees.

Check out the Banneker Recreation Center Storymap below!

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