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Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens

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1882–1921, W. B. Shaw. Kenilworth Ave. and Douglas St. NE
  • (Carol M. Highsmith Archive, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division)
  • (Carol M. Highsmith Archive, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division)

The Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens were acquired by the National Park Service in 1938. They had been developed between 1882 and 1921 by Civil War veteran W. B. Shaw, who dammed 37 acres of his farmland on the eastern shore of the Anacostia to create a series of ponds for an extensive private pleasure garden. He was particularly interested in the cultivation of water lilies, of which there are now about seventy-five varieties. In 1912 Shaw's garden became a commercial venture that was open to the public on Sunday mornings.

Writing Credits

Pamela Scott and Antoinette J. Lee


What's Nearby


Pamela Scott and Antoinette J. Lee, "Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens", [Washington, District of Columbia], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of the District of Columbia, Pamela Scott and Antoinette J. Lee. New York: Oxford University Press, 1993, 279-279.

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