Hidden Rivers and Lost Neighborhoods, a Tour by Bicycle
D.C. wasn’t always a city. The District was once farmland, drained by marshy streams and rushing creeks. Those watercourses still flow, mostly underground.
Starting in the onetime Irish neighborhood of Swampoodle (now under Union Station), we’ll work our way north and west, tracing two historic streams. Along the way, we’ll unearth clues about the shantytowns and streetcar suburbs that sprang up as the city grew. We’ll find out why Bloomingdale floods, and we’ll follow the 19th-century tunnels that still supply our drinking water.
Students will need a bicycle, and will need to be reasonably comfortable riding in city traffic. Almost any sort of bike will do. Students will be responsible for their own safety and for obeying traffic controls. This is a no-drop, non-athletic ride: We will regroup frequently, and we won’t leave anyone behind.
50 Massachusetts Ave. NE