Washington has been a southern-style city for most of its existence, so it might be expected to have a great many shotgun houses. However, this does not appear to be the case. Perhaps the most likely place to find shotguns would have been among the notorious alley dwellings that were demolished in the 1930s and '40s. However, in photos most of these appear to have been very plain two story brick and wooden structures which allowed more density than single story houses. Perhaps the best DC neighborhood for finding shotgun houses is Deanwood, where there is a sprinkling on the sidestreets between Nannie Helen Burroughs Avenue and Sherriff Road NE.
Although shotgun houses are most often associated with poor African-American neighborhoods, each of the pictured houses appear to have had early inhabitants who were white. Although it likely has a shotgun floorplan, 814 L Street SE might not be considered a true shotgun house because it has a flat roof and no evidence of a front porch. Census records suggest that it was built between 1880 and 1900, when the surrounding blocks were a 100% white working class neighborhood. Many heads of neighborhood households were in the mechanical trades and presumably worked in the nearby Naval Gun Factory.
1314 V Street SE is another tradesman's home in a formerly segregated white neighborhood. It has many signature shotgun house touches, including a tin gabled roof and full-width front porch, which in this case has a flat, steeply-sloping roof. Some catalogers claim that because shotgun houses are meant to be packed cheek-by-jowl on narrow urban lots, pure examples should lack side windows, as 314 V does. 314's one claim to ornament is its marque, which implies a second story. Perhaps the ornamental marque's narrower original boards were meant to accent the wide clapboards of the sidewalls which peak out of a tear in the faux brick siding. In December, 2002,1314 V was suddenly demolished despite its location in a historic district.
Recently 1229 E Street SE received almost as much newspaper ink as the Stephen Decatur House. Built on the backside of Capital Hill in the 1850s, 1229 E was the home of Ernest Tungel, a German-born "huckster" and his wife Louisa as late as the 1880s . Over the next 100 years, Tungels were followed by a long-term residents named Hartley and a succession of blue-collar tenants. Eventually the house fell vacant. Recently, 1229 was under a death sentence. Several development proposals were made which would combine 1229's lot with the lots behind it, which front on Pennsylvania Avenue. At the same time, a significant number of neighborhood residents lobbied for the vacant house to be demolished. Demolition was opposed by the Capital Hill Restoration Society, which argued that Capitl Hill had just 2 similar houses, one of which is 814 L Street SE. On September 12 the Advisory Neighborhood Commission voted to support the application for raze permits, unless the Capital Hill Restoration Society devised an alternative plan for the building. However, in what the Hill Rag newspaper called "a hard-nosed decision that went against the advice of ANC 6B and the pleas of many neighbors", the DC Historic Preservation Review Board has voted to deny its necessary permission for demolition. HPRB has no resources to restore the building itself and, while 1229 has a new lease on life, the final chapter in its story is yet to be written.