Georgetown Time Machine: Welcome to Washington

This week on Georgetown Time Machine, GM travels just across Key Bridge a turns back towards the District to be welcomed back home.

The photo, from DDOT’s archives, shows the welcome sign as it appeared in the 1960s. (The sign is technically in Virginia, as the District’s border doesn’t start until the southern shoreline of the Potomac).

The sign was stately and simple with a classy design. Sadly it did not last. GM’s not sure when the greeting was stripped from the structure, but by the George W. Bush presidency it was a clean tableau. GM remembers that to be the case because early on in that controversial president’s term it became host to vulgar messages criticizing or supporting him swapping places as they got whitewashed over.

But then Bush left office and the sign went back to being just an oddly placed white wall for a couple years:

But then sadly it got much worse when in 2012 the District reclaimed it as a welcome sign and apparently just went with a Microsoft Word template for the design:

The only way it would be worse is if they decided to use the papyrus font.

It really is an embarrassing way to welcome people into DC. Why can’t we go back?


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