Montrose Park

4841_signature_MontrosePark.jpg
Washington, DC
United States
Montrose Park

This sixteen-acre park is situated adjacent to Dumbarton Oaks and Dumbarton Oaks Park on a sloping hillside that overlooks Rock Creek Park, on the north side of the Georgetown neighborhood. The land was purchased between 1804 and 1813 by Robert Parrott, a local industrialist who owned the Georgetown Wool & Cotton Factory and manufactured rope at a ropewalk that he constructed on the grounds. Parrott built a house on the property named Elderslie, but the estate was better known as Parrott’s Woods by nearby residents who were allowed to use the grounds for picnics and other leisure activities. After Parrott’s death in 1822 the property passed through several different owners and eventually came to be known as the Montrose Estate. In 1902, Georgetown resident Sarah Louise Rittenhouse led a group of women to petition Congress to purchase the estate as parkland, thus preventing its commercial development. Congress passed a bill on June 25, 1910, and the estate was officially purchased in 1911. The park, designed by George Burnap from the Office of Public Buildings and Grounds, includes tennis courts, trails, a playground, a boxwood maze, woodlands and retains the original ropewalk. Horace Peaslee, who replaced Burnap in 1917, developed the park's entry sequence were, in 1956, a commemorative monument was dedicated to Rittenhouse. The park is administered by the National Park Service as part of the Rock Creek Park system and was listed in the National Register of Historic Places as a contributing feature within the Georgetown Historic District in 1971.