20th Century

Suburban Growth

In the late-nineteenth century and the early-twentieth century, numerous residential suburbs were developed to the north and east of Washington, D.C., along the two railroad lines. The range of late-nineteenth to mid-twentieth century suburbs near Washington, D.C., is found in the National Register Historic Districts of the US 1 Corridor and include Mount Rainier, North Brentwood, Hyattsville, Riverdale Park, West Riverdale, University Park, and Calvert Hills in College Park.

Streetcar Suburbs

The Maryland & Washington Railway was the first streetcar line established in Prince George’s County in 1897. It extended from Washington, D.C., to Hyattsville, Riverdale, and to Laurel by 1902. New suburbs, such as Mount Rainier, Brentwood, North Brentwood, and Cottage City also grew up along this line.

In 1900, the Chesapeake Beach Railway was built to transport summer vacationers to the western shore of the Chesapeake Bay. With the expansion of streetcar service into the winter months, new suburbs, such as Seat Pleasant, Capitol Heights, and Fairmount Heights were established.

In 1908, the Washington, Baltimore, and Annapolis Railway began operation in the county and facilitated the development of communities like Glenarden, Ardwick, Ardmore, and Lincoln.

Residential Architectural Styles

Fine examples of historic domestic architecture survice in Prince George’s County, from the turn of the eighteenth century through the first half of the twentieth century. Important examples of many of these styles are listed below.

Special activities, programs, and events are held at our Historic sites throughout the year.