History of the Lot and Building at 3401 Prospect Street
Before Delta Phi Epsilon Moved There

The above print, published in 1883, shows the newly built home of Wm. F. Seymour
at the northwest corner of the intersection of
Frederick and Prospect Streets in Georgetown
The House is shown in the upper right of this illustration, where Frederick Street meets the crease on the map.
A full-color original of this print is on display in the 2nd floor Museum
of the Georgetown Park Mall at Wisconsin Avenue & M Street.
(For a much clearer copy of this map.
one that you can zoom in on to see any specific location,
click here)

Delta Phi Epsilon's House is built on what is now called Lot 86 of Square 1221 of the City of Washington. This Lot lies at the southeastern corner of the city block bordered by Prospect Street, N Street, 34th Street and 35th Street. The map detail shown below depicts all the buildings that existed on this city block in 1997.

From 1880,
when Georgetown's street numbers were merged with Washington's,
until the mid-1920s,
the various houses on the north side of Prospect Avenue (now Street) had the following address numbers:
3425 (built in 1798 by John Thomson Mason, later called "Quality Hill"
and now the home of Delta Phi Epsilon honorary brother, former U.S. Sen. Claiborne deB. Pell of Rhode Island),
3419 (built in 1890 by ?),
3417 (built in 1890 by ?),
3515 (built in 1872 by James Garrity),
3413 (built in 1866 by James Garrity),
3411 & 3409 (both built in 1859 by William H. & Joseph L.Semmes),
and 3403 (the "Delta Phi Epsilon House," but now numbered 3401, built in 1869-70 by William Seymour).

At present, the address numbers for this north side of Prospect Street are:
3425, 3421, 3419, 3417, 3515, 3413, 3411, 3409, 3405, and 3401
(3421 was added in 1948 when the widow of Sir Wilmot Lewis
separated the servants' quarters at the rear of 3425,
greatly erpanded them, and gave them their own access to Prospect St.;
3405 was added in 1923-24 when Patrick Dempsey built the apartment building now next to the Fraternity House;
and "3401" was chosen in 1923-24 to replace "3403" is the street address for the building that is now the Fraternity House )
The two darkly shaded areas shown on the above map represent the area's only two pre-1800 houses
- "Quality Hill" and "Halcyon House."

Modern Lot 86, the site of the Delta Phi Epsilon House, is a rectangular parcel of land 27.5 feet wide and 73 feet deep. This lot, along with Lot 84 behind it and Lot 87 beside it, were all once known as Lot 85 and comprised most of the Old Georgetown Lot 31. Shown below is a reproduction of the very first Plat of Georgetown, drawn at the time the town was founded in 1751. Lot 31 is the oddly shaped, five-sided parcel of land at the far upper left. The easternmost strip of that Lot 31 later became Frederick (34th) Street. Another strip, was cut across the middle of Lot 31 to become Prospect Street. In 1751, though, when this Plat was drawn, there were only two streets in all of Georgetown: Wisconsin Avenue, then called "High Street" to the north of the present M Street and "Water Street" to the south, and M Street, then called "Bridge Street" to the east of the present Wisconsin Avenue and "The Falls Street" to the west.




Click here for a Photographic Tour of the Alpha Chapter House
Click here for
Photographs of Prior Alpha Chapter Houses.

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