Cornerspotter: Hint: Tom Cruise Made an Appearance on Film in This Building

Valerie Paschall

Welcome to Cornerspotter, Curbed's game in which you try to identify the location and/or identity of a particular building or streetscape in a historic photograph. Think of it as previous Curbed feature Looking Back but with new bragging rights. Impress us and your fellow Curbed readers with your knowledge of Washington D.C.'s past.

[Photo from Neal Harper Kenton's History of the Grand Lodge and of Freemasonry in the District of Columbia]


Although this lovely sepia photo was not dated, we do know that it was featured in a book by Neal Harper Kenton that was published in 1911 and that the featured building (which is still standing in D.C. today) is over 150 years old. It has had a storied history as an assembly hall where Mark Twain once spoke and a more sordid history as a military prison where some deserting soldiers ultimately died. More recently, Tom Cruise made an appearance inside this Greek Revival building in a film shot partially within the District. Finally, the building is named after it's original owner. Do you think you know what it is and where it's located? Guess away!