Out of the Attic: Green’s Mansion House

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Dating to the mid-19th century, this large structure on North Fairfax Street had been known as Greens Mansion House, Mansion House Hospital and Braddock House. By 1848, furniture manufacturer James Green acquired the former Bank of Alexandria building on the corner of Cameron Street and converted it to a hotel. A four-story addition to the east built around 1855 not only made Greens Mansion House the largest hotel in Alexandria, but it completely blocked the historic Carlyle House from view on North Fairfax Street. 

During the Civil War, the Union army converted the hotel into a hospital. Able to hold up to 700 sick and wounded soldiers, the Mansion House Hospital was the largest military hospital in Alexandria. 
    
After the war, the hotel reopened as the Mansion House Hotel. In the early 1880s, with new proprietors, the hotel acquired a new name Braddock House. In 1886, it was advertised as the only first-class hotel in Alexandria and boasted modern improvements, including a telephone, billiard room, bowling alleys, hot and cold baths and a first-class bar. 
    
The property changed hands several times, and part of it was turned into apartments in the early 1900s. Still, the Braddock House building, seen in this photo taken around 1919, had signs posted that read, This house surrounds the old Carlyle House. Entrance through this building. 
    
The Braddock House building deteriorated and in the early 1970s, after the Northern Virginia Park Authority acquired the entire property, the Alexandria City Council approved plans to demolish the old hotel while leaving the former bank building and original mansion in place. Despite protests from some preservationists who considered the hotel building to be historically significant, it was demolished in early 1973, opening up an unobstructed view of Carlyle House. 

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