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Islamic Center

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1949–1957, Egyptian Ministry of Works and Irwin S. Porter and Sons. 2551 Massachusetts Ave. NW
  • (Franz Jantzen)
  • (Photo by Karen Kingsley)
  • (Photo by Karen Kingsley)

The Islamic Center's minaret is one of Washington's few identifiable skyline elements that rise out of the dense green of the city. Among the other religious structures that occupy prominent positions on the city's high ground—the National Cathedral and the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception—its exoticism is unmatched. The architects provided a modernized rendition of the forms and decorative vocabulary of Islamic architecture: the minaret, horseshoe arches, corbeling, and sculpted crenellations. The symmetrical composition of corner blocks frames an arcaded entry and courtyard whose glory is its blue and gold mosaics crafted by the John Joseph Earley Studio in 1953.

Writing Credits

Pamela Scott and Antoinette J. Lee


What's Nearby


Pamela Scott and Antoinette J. Lee, "Islamic Center", [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, 350-350.

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