Photo by Lis Wackman
 
     
   
Interview with:   Margaret Hutchison
Interview Date:   August 27, 2002
Interviewer:  

Linda O’Brien

Transcriber:  

Peggy Pecore

    This interview transcript is the property of the Ruth Ann Overbeck Capitol Hill History Project. Not to be reproduced without permission.
 
   
 
   

Material contained in brackets [ ] has been added by editors subsequent to the interview.

TAPE 1/SIDE 1

HUTCHISON: I was born in Georgetown, so was my Mother and Father born in Georgetown.

O’BRIEN: You were born in Georgetown when, Maggie? Did you remember when that was?

HUTCHISON: Yes, August 28, 1905.

O’BRIEN: There we go. So you will have a birthday tomorrow?

HUTCHISON: Yea.

O’BRIEN: How wonderful.

HUTCHISON: Thank you. I have a birthday tomorrow.

O’BRIEN: Congratulations.

HUTCHISON: Ninety-seven. {Laughs} You’ve heard the story about the wreck of the old 97?

O’BRIEN: No.

HUTCHISON: Well there was supposed to be … I don’t know … there used to be a song called “The Wreck of the Old 97.” So I tell everybody tomorrow is my “wreck” day. {Laughs}

O’BRIEN: OK let me stop this {tape pause} OK Maggie. You can sit back and be comfortable. Feel free.

HUTCHISON: I went to Holy Trinity School in Georgetown [ 1033 36th Street NW] and it’s still there. It is over 100 years old; I don’t know how old it is. I loved it. {Laughs}

O’BRIEN: And now you said that … was your first experience with Capitol Hill, when you got married? What that your first ...

HUTCHISON: Well, we -- no my Mother moved there from Georgetown for awhile [c. 1925], but then I met my husband and got married.

O’BRIEN: So you were living there with your Mother [Marie A. Reynolds] for awhile?

HUTCHISON: Oh yes, in Northeast.

O’BRIEN: And that was at 600 C Street or 600 block.

HUTCHISON: C Street.

O’BRIEN: C Street in northeast?

HUTCHISON: No, that was on Sixth Street, Northeast. [314 Sixth Street NE]

O’BRIEN: Sixth Street in Northeast.

HUTCHISON: Then, it was right there near Stanton Park and then she moved, I got married later moved back to [622] C Street Northeast for a short while.

O’BRIEN: So, what do you remember of your time living there with your Mother on Sixth Street? Can you remember what the area looked like? Can you remember the church that you went to, any activities, any sort of … if you had any sort of religious affiliation?

HUTCHISON: Went to St. Joseph’s Church and my mother worked, I didn’t -- she worked all the time since my father died; we were young, very young. I don’t even remember him.

O’BRIEN: What were you, when you were living there?

HUTCHISON: In Northeast we [Margaret and husband Joseph] moved there [in the late 30s] when the children were little and they went to the -- they used to play right there -- what’s the name of that place -- there was a home right across the street from us that some lady, the Merrick sisters had a place there for children to play. I mean it was beautiful they had everything there -- all kinds of games and pool tables and everything they could play in.

O’BRIEN: Do you remember --

HUTCHISON: It was the Merrick Boys Club. And then the Girls Club was around on another street, but you could go right on through the building but it was a beautiful -- Merrick Boys Club.

O’BRIEN: Merrick Boys Club. Do you remember where that was located?

HUTCHISON: Right there at Sixth and Maryland Avenue. [ 611 C Street NE]

O’BRIEN: You were just about to spell it.

HUTCHISON: It was just across the street from us, like, you know, catty-cornered. So the children had a wonderful time there.

O’BRIEN: So this was your children?

HUTCHISON: Uh-huh.

O’BRIEN: OK. Also, Maggie you were just going to spell that for me. Merrick?

HUTCHISON: M E R R I C K, I think it was. Merrick Boys Club they called it. But the Girls Club was in the front, on the other side, another street, Massachusetts Avenue [ 608 Massachusetts Ave. NE].

O’BRIEN: OK. Now when you, to take you back a little bit to when you lived on Sixth Street with your Mother before you got married and had your kids and then moved back to C Street. What you remember of that time?

HUTCHISON: On Sixth Street? Nothing much…I wasn’t never home {Laughs}. I was dating every night nearly.

O’BRIEN: How old were you at the time?

HUTCHISON: Twenty.

O’BRIEN: So when you were dating, where did you do and where did you meet the fellows and...

HUTCHISON: Where did I meet my husband? [Joseph E. Hutchison]

O’BRIEN: Yeah. Your husband and the other guys that you dated and your friends -- what kinds of activities did you and your friends participate in?

HUTCHISON: I met him in Georgetown. And I don’t know what to say.

O’BRIEN: Do you -- what kinds of things did you do with your friends? After work? What kinds of activities did you do with your friends or do you remember?

HUTCHISON: We went dancing.

O’BRIEN: Where would you go dancing?

HUTCHISON: We used to go to Glen Echo and Chevy Chase Lake.

O’BRIEN: How did you get around? How did you get to Glen Echo?

HUTCHISON: Friends had cars.

O’BRIEN: Do you remember what the streets looked like and what ...

HUTCHISON: Glen Echo was wonderful in those days. Have you ever been there?

O’BRIEN: I have.

HUTCHISON: They say they are bringing it back but it was really a nice place. Really was a lot of fun. Chevy Chase Lake was nice. Beautiful for dancing.

O’BRIEN: Where was Chevy Chase Lake?

HUTCHISON: Well, I don’t know exactly. Up Connecticut Avenue somewhere. It was really nice.

O’BRIEN: So Chevy Chase Lake was an actual lake?

HUTCHISON: They had a lake there and they had this dance hall. That’s what we used to do, just go there to dance. At Glen Echo you could go swimming, dancing, doing and getting on the rides and all that, you know. Of course, another thing, we used to get all dressed up and go downtown; you had to wear gloves and a hat to look nice. You wouldn’t think of going downtown without having a hat and gloves on and being dressed up to go to this theatre and have dinner.

O’BRIEN: And what theatre?

HUTCHISON: Loew’s Palace, and used to be Keith’s Theatre which was very nice. They used to have a lot of you know, vaudeville and all that. Really nice.

O’BRIEN: So this was Keith’s Theatre was before Loew’s? Or it was a separate...

HUTCHISON: Both there at the same time.

O’BRIEN: Do you remember where they were located?

HUTCHISON: Keith’s was on 13th Street, I think, 13th between E and F. And Loew’s was right there at 14th and F. Still there, I think.

O’BRIEN: Did you like living on Capitol Hill at that time? {question repeated}

HUTCHISON: Well, I wasn’t living there on Capitol Hill then. I was living in Georgetown. [1916 forward: They lived at 1424 33rd Street NW, 4418 Conduit Road NW, and 1824 34th Street NW]

O’BRIEN: When you were living on C Street with your mom in your early 20s.

HUTCHISON: Then I went to the theatre. Yea. We enjoyed that.

O’BRIEN: Did you take walks? Did you go to parks? Was an ice cream parlor you frequented?

HUTCHISON: No, I don’t remember doing much walking. Only when we go to parks, Glen Echo or some place. Cabin John’s and walk around or some place like that.

O’BRIEN: What about all the little parks?

HUTCHISON: In Georgetown I did a lot of walking. Up and down the streets ‘cause I knew most everybody over there then.

O’BRIEN: So you spent the bulk of your time in Georgetown. You were just on Capitol Hill for small periods? How long were you on Capitol Hill when it was you and your Mom? When you were living with your Mom.

HUTCHISON: Oh then it was only about a year and a half, I guess. Then I got married and moved to

Georgetown, and I stayed there for eight years [3252 O Street NW, 1813 35th Street NW. Apt. 2] and

then I moved to Northeast.

O’BRIEN: How long were you in Northeast after that?

HUTCHISON: I was there for quite a while ‘cause the kids used to play over there at the Club.

O’BRIEN: What Club?

HUTCHISON: Merrick Boys’ Club. Ten years I guess ‘cause I left C Street and moved on Lexington Place. You know where that is?

O’BRIEN: Uh-huh.

HUTCHISON: I lived there for several years.

O’BRIEN: So what kind of place were you living in on C Street? Was it a row house?

HUTCHISON: {response not understood}

O’BRIEN: Do you remember why you moved to Lexington?

HUTCHISON: Guess I wanted to have a basement for the kids to play in. We fixed that up and made a big room for them to play in. Yea that was --

O’BRIEN: Do you remember what houses were selling for back then?

HUTCHISON: What?

O’BRIEN: Do you remember what the houses sold for?

HUTCHISON: $10,000. {Laughs}. I lost money on selling it.

O’BRIEN: You did? When did you sell it?

HUTCHISON: I sold it for the same amount of money I paid for it which was crazy because we had fixed the basement and did a lot of work to it, you know. I didn’t want to leave there. But one day I got off the bus down there at Sixth and where is that, D, I guess it is because the bus didn’t stop up there at Lexington Place, and some colored man grabbed me by the arm and said “come on baby and I’ll walk you home.” So I went home and I said to my husband “we’re movin.” And he said what move, I said “we’re movin.” So I told him what happened and he something ‘bout he’d go down and punch the guy but I said I didn’t know which one it was there were too many of them there together. He was just acting smart, you know, this guy.

O’BRIEN: Do you remember ‘bout when this was?

HUTCHISON: It was way back. Let’s see. I can’t remember exactly when it was.

O’BRIEN: Do you remember the riots in DC?

HUTCHISON: Well, it was before then. And, but anyway -- he said “you know honey if we go out and buy a house we’re gonna have to pay double.” I said “That’s all right. We can’t take it with us.” So we moved. I didn’t want to move ‘cause I loved Lexington Place. But I wasn’t going to stay there and take that stuff.

O’BRIEN: So what did you like so much about Lexington Place?

HUTCHISON: It was just one nice street and all the neighbors were lovely. Next door to me was Mr. and Mrs. Hart. He was superintendent of all the public schools in Washington. I had good neighbors, and I don’t want to leave there. But, I was not going to stay there and take that stuff.

O’BRIEN: So you had the four children in the house on Lexington.

HUTCHISON: Two of them married then when I moved away.

O’BRIEN: Oh really.

HUTCHISON: And then I moved to Jamestown Road over here in Hyattsville.

O’BRIEN: I don’t know that.

HUTCHISON: You know where that is?

O’BRIEN: No.

HUTCHISON: It was off of what do you call that road?

O’BRIEN: Route One maybe?

HUTCHISON: Main road. Anyhow my husband had an aunt -- her husband came by one day and asked me could they stay at my house for a week or two and they stayed until they found a place and they stayed for 12 years {Laughs}.

O’BRIEN: On my goodness, now that’s a story.

HUTCHISON: But that was great. We got along great.

O’BRIEN: So now taking you back to Capitol Hill. You had the kids and they went to the Boys and Girls Club and played there and had a good time.

HUTCHISON: Yeah.

O’BRIEN: Did anybody participate in any sports? Was anybody on any sports teams? Did you participate in sports, or the kids or your husband or do you remember?

HUTCHISON: What did they play -- my boys played on everything. I had a dog named Trixy. And she was more or less the mascot of the whole neighborhood. And everybody loved her. She was...

O’BRIEN: Did you have a vet on the Hill, a veterinarian?

HUTCHISON: Veterinarian? No. No special one. Anyhow I had Trixy for about 15 years. My daughter used to dress her up in baby doll clothes and roll her up and down the street in a doll carriage. {Laughs} One of the boys came home from service one year -- he had been in the Navy -- and he said “oh my I met everybody but Trixy; where is Trixy?” and Trixy had died, and I said she was just a dog. But he remembered her.

O’BRIEN: When was the last time you went back to Capitol Hill?

HUTCHISON: Went where?

O’BRIEN: Back on Capitol Hill.

HUTCHISON: My son drives me over there once in a while to go by.

O’BRIEN: What looks different to you now?

HUTCHISON: Not that much difference.

O’BRIEN: No? What were the roads like? Do you see a difference in the roads now?

HUTCHISON: Only difference is the streetcars. We used to have streetcars go down C Street, and I liked that ‘cause you could walk right down the street and get on the streetcar and go. But they don’t have them any more.

O’BRIEN: No. So where would you go on the streetcar?

HUTCHISON: Downtown. Shoppin.

O’BRIEN: F Street?

HUTCHISON: F Street.

O’BRIEN: Do you remember how late into the night the streetcars would run?

HUTCHISON: How what?

O’BRIEN: How late into the night. Did you take the streetcars for dates and that sort of thing?

HUTCHISON: No, didn’t have that.

O’BRIEN: No?

HUTCHISON: But I sure miss that. I liked the streetcar. I know when I started to drive my husband said, you know, I didn’t know north from south east and west; I still don’t. And I told him I didn’t. He said you could have worried me to death if you drive; you don’t know north, south, east, or west. I said that’s all right I’ll follow the streetcars. He said “I see you driving the streetcars now.” But I was lucky I did drive because he got sick and I took him to doctors and everywhere else.

O’BRIEN: What did he do?

HUTCHISON: And I drove ‘til I was 93 years old.

O’BRIEN: Wow.

HUTCHISON: Until after I came here [Jeanne Jugan Residence, NE Washington].

O’BRIEN: Wow.

HUTCHISON: I wouldn’t have given it up then {Laughs} if it wasn’t that I was so old. I was afraid if I had an accident they would blame it on me if it wasn’t my fault {Laughs}. That’s the only reason why I gave it up.

O’BRIEN: Wow.

HUTCHISON: ‘Cause I loved to drive.

O’BRIEN: You like to get out and go don’t you?

HUTCHISON: Yea. I like to go. Get on that car and go. I miss more than that, it took away my independence.

O’BRIEN: What did your husband do for a living?

HUTCHISON: He worked at a bakery.

O’BRIEN: Do you remember which one? Was it the Wonder Bread?

HUTCHISON: No. Ottenberg’s. He worked at Ottenberg’s. But he died when he was working there.

O’BRIEN: Where did the children go to school?

HUTCHISON: They went to -- let’s see -- in Georgetown they went to one on up on -- Hilton, over there in Northeast, I think that’s the name of it.

O’BRIEN: Do you remember where it was located?

HUTCHISON: Right there near Stanton Park. Peabody. And then there was I think Peabody and there was one called Hilton I think. [ Hilton Public School, 206 – 216 Sixth Street NE]

O’BRIEN: There is a Stuart Hobson .

HUTCHISON: Huh?

O’BRIEN: Stuart Hobson Middle School. Does that sound familiar?

HUTCHISON: I remember Peabody, I don’t know, seems like Hilton, I don’t know where I get that name.

O’BRIEN: Do you remember any of the stories from the kids in the school? Any stories from when your kids were in school? Remember any of that?

HUTCHISON: [no response]

O’BRIEN: How did your husband get to and from work at the bakery?

HUTCHISON: He drove.

O’BRIEN: Do you remember where the bakery was? Where was the bakery at the time, do you remember?

HUTCHISON: Over here in Northeast somewhere. He worked at dairy for a long time. Chevy Chase Dairy and Chestnut Farms. [In sales. He also worked for Thompsons Dairy]

O’BRIEN: Did you ever go to Sherrill’s. Remember Sherrill’s on Pennsylvania Avenue?

HUTCHISON: What’s the name?

O’BRIEN: Sherrill’s. It was a bakery and sort of I think a family-run restaurant on Pennsylvania Avenue. Do you remember any of the establishments -- did you all every go to dinner -- go out to dinner with the family on Capitol Hill?

HUTCHISON: I can’t remember all of them -- names of them.

O’BRIEN: Does anything stand out in your head?

HUTCHISON: I used to like to go to the Willard Hotel to the Peacock Alley and dance {Laughs} and we’d go there and have dinner and have you ever been to Peacock Alley?

O’BRIEN: No.

HUTCHISON: In the Willard. They still have it.

O’BRIEN: So they have live music for dancing?

HUTCHISON: I don’t know. I guess they still do. I don’t know about that.

O’BRIEN: Is that what they used to do?

HUTCHISON: Yeah.

O’BRIEN: So you’d get all dressed up.

HUTCHISON: Yeah. Always dressed up. You wouldn’t think going downtown without being. dressed up {Laughs}.

O’BRIEN: Oh yeah. Did you do that a lot? Did you like to do that a lot?

HUTCHISON: Yea. I loved it {Laughs} we used to have a lot of fun. Always had gloves. My girlfriend one time she lost her gloves so I would give her one of mine and let them think she’s carrying gloves and I’m carrying gloves {Laughs}. Crazy things we’d do.

O’BRIEN: What other crazy things did you do?

HUTCHISON: {Laughs}.

O’BRIEN: That you can talk about.

HUTCHISON: Play hooky.

O’BRIEN: Where did you play hooky.

HUTCHISON: From school.

O’BRIEN: What school.

HUTCHISON: Holy Trinity.

O’BRIEN: Where is that located?

HUTCHISON: In Georgetown.

O’BRIEN: And you’d...

HUTCHISON: Play hooky and go downtown and spend all my lunch money and everything {Laughs}.

O’BRIEN: What did you spend your lunch money on?

HUTCHISON: Candy and nibbles and that stuff. {Laughs}.

O’BRIEN: Oh, my goodness.

HUTCHISON: One time I got my cousin to go downtown with me and my goodness we got down to 14th and New York Avenue. She didn’t have any money to get home and neither did I. So she could cry easily so I said “Agnes you start crying and anybody comes along and asked what’s the matter I’ll tell them thaty you lost our money and we hadn’t no way to get home.” So we had to get a streetcar to get home -- we lived way out on McArthur Boulevard.

O’BRIEN: When was that you were on McArthur Boulevard?

HUTCHISON: This was before I was married. {Laughs} She started crying and this guy came up to us and said “little girl what’s the matter, what can I do for you?” And I told him we’d lost our money so he started give us some money to get on the streetcar and a boy that knew our brothers who went around with our brothers came up and said oh I know these girls, I’ll see they get home all right So she took {Laughs} -- that was some day. We had fun.

O’BRIEN: What kind of hard times do you remember?

HUTCHISON: Hard times?

O’BRIEN: Hard times. Do you remember any hard times?

HUTCHISON: Yea. My Father died; that was the worst thing. [Robert E. Reynolds, born 1878, died 1914? Robert was a paperhanger with his brothers.]

O’BRIEN: When was that?

HUTCHISON: Was on a Good Thursday, Holy Thursday. We were off from school that day. I woke up and my Mother was crying and she told me he’d passed away.

O’BRIEN: You were very young at that time? Where were you living then?

HUTCHISON: In Georgetown. So she was left with four children and her Mother and Father were dead so we had a hard time. [They lived with Robert H and Margaret T. Reynolds in 1915, probably the paretnts of her husband, Robert E. Reynolds]

O’BRIEN: So it was hard times growing up as a child. It was hard times for you when you were growing up.

HUTCHISON: Yea. So anyhow she went to work. Some colored people had to take care of us, get us our lunch and dinner -- lunch, I mean, while we went to school, but it was...

O’BRIEN: So how did your Mother pay for that? How did your Mother get them? The help that you had?

HUTCHISON: She had to ride the streetcars.

O’BRIEN: How did she get help into the house?

HUTCHISON: She did it all herself.

O’BRIEN: People who were -- people who came in and helped you with the breakfast, people who came in and gave you your breakfast and such, how did she find them?

HUTCHISON: My brother and I did that. He was 10 and I was 8 and my other brother and sister were 6 and 4, so we pitched in and helped one and another.[1914: George E., Margaret, John and Katharine]

O’BRIEN: So why did your Mother move from Georgetown to Capitol Hill?

HUTCHISON: To Northeast? I don’t know. She just wanted a change and she thought it would be easier for her to get to work too, I think. [Marie Reynolds worked at the Bureau of Printing , as did Margaret T. Reynolds. Marie was a printers assistant in 1915.] But anyway I met my husband and he come all the way from Georgetown to Northeast to take me to work and back. ‘Cause I was working in Northeast and Georgetown.

O’BRIEN: Where were you working in Georgetown?

HUTCHISON: Chevy Chase Dairy.

O’BRIEN: Where was that located?

HUTCHISON: N Street -- Wisconsin and N. [3206 N Street NW]

O’BRIEN: So that was...

HUTCHISON: That was a nice place to work.

O’BRIEN: What did they sell there, I mean dairy products: cheese, milk, ice cream, eggs? What kind of a shop was it when you say dairy?

HUTCHISON: They sold milk and cream, butter and eggs and cottage cheese and everything like that. It was a lot of work, working there.

O’BRIEN: How long did it take for you to get from your home in Northeast to the shop in Georgetown?

HUTCHISON: At least an hour ‘cause you had to transfer, so he was big help, he would come get me and take me to work.

O’BRIEN: How long would it take when he was driving you?

HUTCHISON: About a half hour.

O’BRIEN: Was there a lot of traffic?

HUTCHISON: Yes, quite a bit.

O’BRIEN: So did you like about living on Capitol Hill? In Northeast.

HUTCHISON: Stanton Park.

O’BRIEN: What did you like about Stanton Park?

HUTCHISON: It was nice and peaceful and the people were nice. Everybody you met there were nice. It was clean.

O’BRIEN: Did you go to the park itself a lot?

HUTCHISON: Yea. We were only a half a block away from it.

O’BRIEN: So what did you do at the park?

HUTCHISON: Mostly roll around and go across the street and get some ice cream and go to the theatre and come back around the park and take pictures and all.

O’BRIEN: Where did you get the ice cream? Where did get ice cream?

HUTCHISON: They had a High’s across the street right there [1940: 505 Stanton Place NE]. Use to go there and get it or else at the delicatessen [ 501 Stanton Place NE. Stanton Place is on the south side of Stanton Park.], one or the other.

O’BRIEN: So, I don’t know the High’s and I don’t know the delicatessen over there now.

HUTCHISON: They’re right there, you know, where the movie used to be?

O’BRIEN: No.

HUTCHISON: There was a movie right there. There was a big house on the corner -- a friend of mine’s Mother and Father owned it right there at ... [perhaps 519 Stanton Place NE].

O’BRIEN: Do you know where Peabody is. Where was it in relation to Peabody?

HUTCHISON: Right there on the corner.

O’BRIEN: If you standing outside of Peabody facing the park, looking away from Peabody would it be to your right or to your left?

HUTCHISON: The park is right here and the street right {mumble} where there was a lunchroom there now I think used to be a delicatessen and then there was a barber shop there.

O’BRIEN: On the corner.

HUTCHISON: Yeah, right there is a barber shop. [ 503 Stanton Place: Elmer Hunt in 1925]

O’BRIEN: On Massachusetts Avenue? The angular street that comes through the park?

HUTCHISON: It was actually on, what street is it, I don’t know, not C Street.

O’BRIEN: If you were coming out of Peabody and you wanted to go to the barber shop would you turn right out of Peabody?

HUTCHISON: Yeah. And right down the corner from there there was a movie. There was this big apartment house my friends’ people owned and then the movie.

O’BRIEN: Do you remember the name of the movie?

HUTCHISON: Stanton Park, Stanton Park Movie. [Stanton Theater, 513 Stanton Place]

O’BRIEN: Stanton Park Movie.

HUTCHISON: Yeah. Gosh, my gosh, my kids stayed there and I loved that mean you would walk right across the street there’s the park.

O’BRIEN: So there was a park, a High’s, a delicatessen, a movie theatre.

HUTCHISON: Yea, it was a very convenient place and around the corner not far from us was a library, nice library. The library is still there.

O’BRIEN: Probably, there are a couple of libraries; there is one nearby there.

HUTCHISON: One of kids, I could have murdered him one day.

O’BRIEN: What happened?

HUTCHISON: Some dared him; jumped down those steps with skates on. Told him he was sissy if he didn’t. So he jumped down there and broke his collarbone. {Laughs}

O’BRIEN: So what did you do? What did you do when he broke his collarbone?

HUTCHISON: I just told him he was crazy if he told you to jump in the fire would you do it. He said no. I said why did you do that? Wasn’t no use saying anything he had already done it.

O’BRIEN: Did you get him to the hospital?

HUTCHISON: Oh yeah.

O’BRIEN: Which hospital did you go to?

HUTCHISON: Casualty, at that time. It’s not Casualty now, I don’t know what it is, it is some big nursing home or something.

O’BRIEN: Do you remember where it was. Where was it located?

HUTCHISON: Right there on Eighth Street. Eighth and -- that big building. That used to be Casualty Hospital.

O’BRIEN: Eighth and Constitution?

HUTCHISON: Yeah. I had him there many a time. He broke his teeth, broke his collarbone, broke his nose. {Laughs} Everytime I turned around he was breaking something. ‘Cause he like to have fun. He had his fun.

O’BRIEN: What did the girls do?

HUTCHISON: My daughter? I only had the one.

O’BRIEN: Only one. What did your daughter do?

HUTCHISON: She was more -- they called her the mascot of the Boys Club. She was the only girl allowed in the boys’ section. She was a little teeny thing. They let -- everybody loved her. {Laughs}

O’BRIEN: So the Boys and Girls Clubs were pretty important.

HUTCHISON: Yea, they were very good, very good. Wonderful.

O’BRIEN: And then did the kids sort of join teams at the Boys and Girls Clubs. Sports teams and...

HUTCHISON: They had teams and they had dinners and they had nice things, was a real nice place.

O’BRIEN: And so do you think that your life for a period of time there sort of revolved around the boys’ and girls clubs’ and the activities there, it was kind of central to your life?

HUTCHISON: Oh yeah.

O’BRIEN: It was kind of central to your life?

HUTCHISON: Oh yeah.

O’BRIEN: Was that true of your neighbors as well?

HUTCHISON: The neighbors. Everybody helped at the Boys Cub you know when they needed us.

O’BRIEN: So you volunteered there?

HUTCHISON: Yeah. Volunteered to help. They had a dinner or something you would cook something and take it, you know and it was really nice.

O’BRIEN: Did you go out right in your neighborhood a lot. You said you used to go to Stanton Park. Did you go to the park and walk the dog and see you neighbors and that kind of thing.

HUTCHISON: Oh yeah.

O’BRIEN: Did the other neighbors look after your kids for you when you weren’t around and come and tell you what one kid was doing I saw this one doing that -- that kind of thing?

HUTCHISON: Oh yeah, and then when the boys went off to war we were all so anxious to you know when they came back home to see them and all that.

O’BRIEN: What war are you referring to?

HUTCHISON: Gee, Second World War, I guess.

O’BRIEN: OK. And so all the neighbors came together and that?

HUTCHISON: Well, we would go see one another at their houses or something, you know.

O’BRIEN: Do you remember how life changed during that period? How was your life different during that period than any other period?

HUTCHISON: It was sad when the kids were in service. We were lucky. They didn’t get to be in conflict. One of them went to Germany; Austria, rather, and the other went to the Panama Canal. So that wasn’t too bad.

O’BRIEN: Do you remember a big homecoming?

HUTCHISON: Oh yeah.

O’BRIEN: Did the neighbors all come together and have a big homecoming or was it pretty much individual?

HUTCHISON: No, they were all individual. But like, one neighbor she would leave her Christmas tree all up, said she was going to save it ‘til her son came home and he didn’t get home ‘til summer but the Christmas tree was still up. She had a beautiful tree and that was sort of a congressional thing, you know. One of her sons was like a son to me. I always called him my other son ‘cause he was at my house most of the time.

O’BRIEN: Did you live around any political figures? Do you remember living around any?

END OF TAPE 1/SIDE 1
TAPE 1/SIDE 2

O’BRIEN: Do you remember any influential people or important people?

HUTCHISON: My grandma [Annie E. Hutchison, widow of Irvin W.] -- Jack Kennedy lived in the house next door to where my grandmother used to live in Georgetown. He and Jackie Kennedy right next door to where Grandma lived. N Street. [Annie Hutchison lived at 3048 N Street NW]

O’BRIEN: So when you go to Capitol Hill the last time you were on Capitol Hill with your son what did you -- do you remember anything striking you that was very different from when you used to live there?

HUTCHISON: No. It’s about the same. I can’t see any difference.

O’BRIEN: Well some of the buildings are not there right, like the High’s, and the delicatessen and the movie theatre.

HUTCHISON: I don’t even know what’s over there now. You know, I didn’t pay that much attention. We were more interested in the houses we lived in than anything else.

O’BRIEN: Are they still there. The houses you lived in are still there?

HUTCHISON: Yea, and some of the neighborhood’s going down so bad. We were shocked last time we went on Lexington Place; only house looked good was our house. The rest of them were all beat up and just don’t take care of anything.

O’BRIEN: Do you remember what our address was on Lexington?

HUTCHISON: Six twenty three [ 623 Lexington Place NE]

O’BRIEN: And when did you leave there; when did you sell it? Do you remember when you sold that house?

HUTCHISON: No, I don’t know. It’s been time ago. Gosh my husband has been dead 38 years.

O’BRIEN: Thirty eight? And it was before that?

HUTCHISON: He died in 1965. It has been a long time. Let’s see it has been longer than 38 years now.

O’BRIEN: And you had already left the city by the time he died? Were you in Hyattsville at that time?

HUTCHISON: Where was I living when he died? Yeah, I was living in Hyattsville when he died.

O’BRIEN: So did your children enjoy living on Capitol Hill?

HUTCHISON: On yeah. They loved it. ‘Cause they loved the club house,

O’BRIEN: The Boys and Girls Club?

HUTCHISON: Uh-huh, and they met the girlfriends in Northeast, and their wives.

O’BRIEN: Really?

HUTCHISON: Yeah.

O’BRIEN: Did they meet them at school or...

HUTCHISON: Two of my sons have been married over 50 years now.

O’BRIEN: Wow.

HUTCHISON: One just celebrated his 50th wedding anniversary last month and the other one celebrated his last year. Two of them been married 50 years. The other two children dead. That’s pretty good isn’t it?

O’BRIEN: That’s very good.

HUTCHISON: They don’t stay together these days.

O’BRIEN: No they don’t. It’s pretty hard. I can understand that. So where do your children live now?

HUTCHISON: They live in -- Ronnie lives in White Oak, out that way, and Jack lives in Atlanta right now. {phone rings} “Scuse me, that’s my daughter-in-law. Yeah, Atlanta, Georgia. They just got back late last night. They just celebrated -- oh they just had a beautiful 50th wedding anniversary. Everything was beautiful.

O’BRIEN: Wow. Do you know anybody, do you remember anybody, that you used to know when you lived in Northeast who still lives in northeast?

HUTCHISON: No I don’t. All of them have passed on.

O’BRIEN: All passed on.

HUTCHISON: Yeah.

O’BRIEN: Any of the kids that your children went to school with ? Or that your children went to school with.

HUTCHISON: No. I don’t get to Georgetown much any more so I don’t know if any are living there or not. My mother-in-law lived in Georgetown for a long time but then she moved to Virginia, now she passed away.

O’BRIEN: Did you like Georgetown better? Or Capitol Hill?

HUTCHISON: Georgetown any day.

O’BRIEN: Why do you say that?

HUTCHISON: Just because I grew up there I guess. And that’s where I had all my friends. Went to school and to me that’s my happy hunting ground. {Laughs} I still like to go over. My son drives me over there once in a while.

O’BRIEN: Uh-huh So -- how did you -- I know you were in Georgetown in a different part of your life, in a different stage of life than when you were on Capitol Hill.

HUTCHISON: Yeah.

O’BRIEN: Aside from that what differences did you notice from living in Georgetown vs. living on Capitol Hill? Can you think of any other stories or anything that you might remember? Anything else that you might remember?

HUTCHISON: Can’t think of anything.

O’BRIEN: Thank you for your time. I’ll come back any time if you want to...

HUTCHISON: Northeast is really growing up some.

O’BRIEN: How do you mean? What do you -- what are you thinking?

HUTCHISON: They have done a lot of building around, you know, around where St. Joseph’s is, around there. I used to like to go to church at St. Joseph’s and stop by the bakery and get some hot rolls and {Laughs}.

O’BRIEN: And where was the bakery?

HUTCHISON: It was right there on C Street.

O’BRIEN: Do you remember what the name of it was?

HUTCHISON: I don’t remember the name of it but I remember the bakery; it was very good,

O’BRIEN: Right around the corner from St. Joseph’s, on C Street?

HUTCHISON: Yea, right near -- we would always stop there and get some hot rolls to take home, buns or something. [1940: August M. Panzer, 312 C Street NE]

O’BRIEN: Uh-huh. I don’t think the bakery is there any more.

HUTCHISON: I don’t think so. All the good things have gone, you know. Just like Georgetown, used to be so nice and now they’ve got all these hippies and -- we didn’t have any of that when I was growing up. You would walk the street and never be scared.

O’BRIEN: Did you lock the doors when you lived on Capitol Hill?

HUTCHISON: Never locked our doors. We didn’t lock our doors when we lived on Capitol Hill. Children come in and out all day long, you know.

O’BRIEN: What did the kids do in the summertime when they were off school. Spend all their days at the Boys and Girls Club?

HUTCHISON: Yea, they’d go to the Club most of the time. They still went to the club, they loved it.

O’BRIEN: Wow. Well thank you Maggie.

HUTCHISON: I think it’s still there. Part of it. There’s something there. The building is still there.

O’BRIEN: Where did you say it was located?

HUTCHISON: Do you know that old gray church is on the corner -- Sixth and C -- there is a big church on the corner [301 Sixth Street NE]; well right across from there is right directly across from the church is the Boys Club; I mean on that same street right across from it. The side of the church [ C Street]; not the front of it. The front of it faces Sixth Street. But C Street is right there, Sixth and C right there on the corner right there not exactly on the corner is where the Boys Club is. There is a big building and then the Boys Club. I guess it ‘s still there.

O’BRIEN: Was it there the last time you went by?

HUTCHISON: Yea, but I don’t know whether it is still a Boys Club or not.

O’BRIEN: Oh I see what you’re saying. The building, the structure, is still there.

HUTCHISON: Building’s there.

O’BRIEN: Uh-huh.

HUTCHISON: But I don’t know what’s where the old movie used to be. You say it’s not there?

O’BRIEN: I don’t know of an old movie over there. Where is the old movie in relation to the church? Or where the boys’ club was? Where was the movie? Where did it used to be?

HUTCHISON: The movie? Right there across from the club -- right there on C Street -- I think yes it’s C Street.

O’BRIEN: Was it Maryland Avenue over there?

HUTCHISON: No, not Maryland Avenue, not that far. It’s a street -- here’s the park and right there is the street. I think it is C Street.

O’BRIEN: C Street cuts right into Stanton Park right in the middle of it right through the other side.

HUTCHISON: I think this is the other part of C Street you know. ‘Cause here’s the park and the movie was right over there near the corner. Yeah. And this big building my friend lived in. Great big apartment house. Her mother owned it. She, like you said, went to the movies practically every night because she only lived next door.

O’BRIEN: Did they show first run movies that had just been released.

HUTCHISON: On yeah. On Saturdays the kids would come in -- they would have cowboys and Indians. {Laughs}

O’BRIEN: So that was a big attraction in the neighborhood too.

HUTCHISON: Yes it was. It was a nice neighborhood it really was. Nice neighborhood to raise children ‘cause they learned a lot how to take care of things at the Club, you know, and how to treat one another and they had a lot of wonderful friends and they’d bring them home so I got to know a lot of them.

O’BRIEN: Do you remember Massachusetts Avenue between Stanton Park and Union Station?

HUTCHISON: Yes.

O’BRIEN: Have you seen that the last time you went to northeast did you see that portion?

HUTCHISON: Well I went by there but don’t remember it was anything special.

O’BRIEN: I was just wondering if you noticed that’s a lot of restaurants now, there are a lot of restaurants in that area. It wasn’t like that when you were there was it?

HUTCHISON: No.

O’BRIEN: Was that just individual residences at that time?

HUTCHISON: Yeah.

O’BRIEN: Well, thank you for your time Maggie.

HUTCHISON: I’m sorry I wasn’t much help.

O’BRIEN: Oh no. You’ve been wonderful. Some more information than we had when we came in that’s for sure, so thank you.

END OF TAPE 1/SIDE 2

 
   

END OF INTERVIEW

 
   
This interview transcript is the property of the Ruth Ann Overbeck
Capitol Hill History Project. Not to be reproduced without permission.