Perhaps the American Legion Post’s most distinctive artifact is its home, a rust-colored rowhouse on North Capitol Street, at the juncture of the rapidly gentrifying neighborhoods of Edgewood, Bloomingdale and Eckington. Post No. 5 acquired the home in 1954, after selling its original home on Vermont Avenue Northwest. Both houses were purchased by fundraising among members; the North Capitol Street house was purchased for about $13,500.
The Post members still have meetings in the house, though the large basement meeting room often serves as a reminder of the dwindling number of active members. The house is a repository for countless pieces of memorabilia, photos and documents—but perhaps more importantly, it holds the memories and history of the organization’s roles in the return of veterans from American wars, the fight against local and national segregation in the Civil Rights Movement, and even the welcoming of visitors during the inauguration of Barack Obama in 2009.