Author Talk “Alexander Robey Shepherd: The Man Who Built the Nation’s Capital"

Jerry A. McCoy's picture

The Peabody Room at the Georgetown Neighborhood Library announces an upcoming talk by author/historian John P. Richardson about his recent biography, “Alexander Robey Shepherd: The Man Who Built the Nation’s Capital.”  The program will be held at 1:00 PM, Saturday, April 8 in the Peabody Room (3rd floor) of the library at 3260 R St., NW, Washington, D.C. 20007.  It is free and open to the public.


Alexander Shepherd was the self-made man who, in the decade after the Civil War, transformed Washington, D.C. from an uneven, shabby city pummeled by the stress of war into what became the elegant, modern city we know today.  Shepherd achieved this objective by creating a political movement that consolidated the city’s three separate jurisdictions and by a relentless public works campaign that eventually drove the city bankrupt and caused Congress to retake direct control of Washington for the next 100 years.  Shepherd, temporarily in disgrace, moved to Mexico, where he built a modern silver-mining operation and died in 1902.


John P. Richardson tells Alexander Shepherd’s story in the first full-length biography of this uniquely Washington figure.  Richardson divided his career between the non-profit sector and the U.S. government, specializing in the Middle East and the Muslim world.  He is past president of the Arlington Historical Society and serves as Secretary of the Association of Oldest Inhabitants (AOI).  He is a member of the Historical Society of Washington and the Cosmos Club and lives in Arlington, Va.


For further information, contact Jerry A. McCoy, special collections librarian of the Peabody Room, at 202-727-0233 or