Conduit Road Schoolhouse – Washington, D.C. - Atlas Obscura

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Conduit Road Schoolhouse

The Conduit Road Schoolhouse is one of the last one-room schoolhouses remaining in Washington, D.C. 


This school was built in 1874, replacing a school built in 1864 that was destroyed in a fire. The school operated until 1928, at which time the building was converted into a library.

In 1965, the Palisades branch of the DC Public Library system opened, spelling the potential destruction of the Conduit Road Schoolhouse, but the Palisades Citizens Association stepped in and fought to preserve the building. It was transformed into the Children’s Museum of Washington from 1965 to 1989.

After once again facing the prospect of closure, the building was saved by Susan M. Seligmann, President of Discovery Creek Children’s Museum, who was able to lease the building from the National Park Service and transform it into a multicultural children’s library.

In 2020, the Palisades History Museum made a push to use the Conduit Road Schoolhouse as a home for its local history exhibits. However, they were informed by the National Park Service office of Resource Management that renovations, including the addition of a ramp to facilitate entrance by any person, would need to be completed first.

It appears that this work may have been delayed as the building has overgrowth encroaching on the sides of the building as of August 2022.

Know Before You Go

The Conduit Road Schoolhouse was added to the National Register of Historic Places on November 30, 1973.

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September 2, 2022

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