• Chevy Chase Lake Amusement Park

    Chevy Chase Lake


    Between 1894 and 1937 Chevy Chase Lake Amusement Park was Chevy Chase’s very own “high class amusement resort” for a “most refined patronage”. Located at the end of the streetcar line along Connecticut Avenue, the amusement park was a destination for band concerts, recreation, and amusement rides. This exhibition uses newspaper articles, oral history reminiscences, and photographs to explore the park’s history, including Jim Crow laws in effect at the amusement park and “scandalous” new dances that were barred at the dance pavilion.  

    Image credit: Boating on Chevy Chase Lake, undated.


  • Chevy Chase Lake

    Chevy Chase Lake Amusement Park

    In this exhibit we explore Chevy Chase Lake as an early amusement park, from its opening in 1894 to its final season in 1936.

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  • Trolley Parks

    Trolley Car image

    In this section, we discuss the role of amusement parks at the end of trolley lines, and their role in suburban development. 

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  • A "High Class Park"

    Large group shot of men and women at Chevy Chase Lake

    In this section, we look at the efforts by the management of the amusement park to keep out “rowdyism” and ensure the safety of women and children.

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  • James Pugh's Memoir

    Hand drawn map of Chevy Chase Lake

    Both Mr. Pugh's memoir and hand-drawn map of the lake are presented in this section of the online exhibit, providing a detailed image of the amusement park around 1910 - 1912.

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  • Amusements for All

    A family sitting on the shores of Chevy Chase Lake

    Here we survey the many different kinds of amusements differed to patrons of Chevy Chase Lake.

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  • Skating on the Lake

    Newspaper Advertisement for Skating on Chevy Chase Lake

    Not part of the regular amusement park season, local residents enjoyed skating on the lake for many years.

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  • Band Concerts

    Chevy Chase Lake Band Program

    Evening concerts were popular with patrons of all ages.

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  • Dancing at the Pavilions

    Chevy Chase Lake Fox Trot Program

    Find out about the many forms of social dancing that took place at the pavilions.

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  • Music by Meyer Davis

    Image of Band Leader Meyer Davis

    Find out about how Meyer Davis  was important in bringing entertainment to the park.

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  • Kate Smith Sings!

    Washington Times advertisement for Saturday evening entertainment at Chevy Chase lake

    Learn about when famed singer Kate Smith made her debut at Chevy Chase Lake in 1923.

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  • Music in the 1930s

    Washington Times advertisement for music and dancing at Chevy Chase Lake

    The early 1930s brought big bands and beer!

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  • About the Exhibit

    Photograph of passengers on the last trolley passengers of Chevy Chase Lake line

    Find out more about who helped create the exhibit in this section.

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