Rock Creek Park

Cleveland Park to Rock Creek Station

A nice 5-mile Sunday walk through Rock Creek Park in Washington, D.C., from the Cleveland Park Metro to Rock Creek Station and back.

Boulder Bridge is a scenic spot along the route, and was built in 1902 at a cost of $17,636, which would be a project costing around $11.1 million in 2011 dollars, as calculated by Measuring Worth. There’s an interesting background article about Boulder Bridge at Ghosts of DC, with several photos from different time periods and a detail drawing of the bridge’s construction. Rock Creek appears to be running much higher in this photo than any of the others, perhaps because of the recent heavy storms.

Another interesting landmark is Peirce Mill, which stands on property that was part of English land patents dating from 1747 to 1772. Isaac Peirce, a Pennsylvania Quaker living in Georgetown, acquired the pertinent portions in 1794, at which time there was already an undershot mill on the property. Peirce built the current structure in the 1820s, and upgraded it to a more efficient overshot mill in the 1840s. The mill’s internal machinery was changed several times over the years, but the Historic Registry entry (pdf) indicates the external appearance is almost unchanged from the 1820s, except for undocumented changes made by the Public Works Administration during the 1930s. There is another restoration in progress today.

All told, a pleasant autumn stroll in an area of Washington most tourists don’t come to see!

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