A Digital Exploration of Community Building in Arlington County, Virginia
"Built by the People Themselves" explores the processes of community development and suburbanization in Arlington County, Virginia. Arlington is a small county located in northern Virginia, just across the Potomac River from Washington, D.C.
This site is a piece of my doctoral dissertation from George Mason University. Since its earliest suburban development, Arlington was made up of diverse neighborhoods, each with divergent, competing visions for the area’s future. My exploration of the process of creating and defending communities within the suburban environment will analyze how the physical environment of Arlington reflected racial tensions, as competitions over race, space, and aesthetics literally built a physical manifestation of a county divided under Jim Crow. This study tracks the roles of the government, community institutions, and planning.
Learn more about federally sponsored housing and construction during World War Two.
Arlington Branch NAACP
In June of 1918 the first rural branch of the NAACP formed in Falls Church with the express goals of working against discrimination and segregation. Support for the NAACP and its causes continued to…
Recreation facilities, churches, schools, social and fraternal organizations, and businesses all make up community institutions. These institutions help to form distinct neighborhoods as well as…