Life Sketches of Ellen G. White


Favorable Conditions at Takoma Park, D. C.

During the latter part of July, 1903, representative brethren from many parts of the field met in Washington, D. C., and proceeded at once to inspect the outlying portions of the District of Columbia for suitable properties. Morning by morning, before going out, they met to pray earnestly for divine guidance. And their prayers were signally answered. In Takoma Park, one of the most attractive and healthful of the towns near Washington, was found a tract of fifty acres, which seemed to meet all requirements. With an altitude of about three hundred feet, the tract was only seven miles from the capitol building, and within the limits of Takoma Park, thus having the advantages of postal services, gas, water, sewerage, and streets; and at the same time it was sufficiently isolated by dense forests to have the added advantages of a retired country estate. The property was covered with hundreds of native trees; and across one side of it, yet inside the boundary line, ran a picturesque stream fed by living springs. LS 394.3

In former years this property had been selected by a Boston physician for a sanitarium site, and upon it he had expended, including purchase price, about sixty thousand dollars. At heavy cost he had had cleared away the underbrush, logs, and rubbish; but he had been unable to finance his proposed enterprise, and after his death the property had fallen into the hands of a gentleman who held a $15,000 mortgage against it, and who was now offering it for $6,000. LS 395.1

The brethren felt clear in securing, without delay, this beautiful property, thereby making practicable the establishment of a sanitarium and a school near the proposed denominational headquarters. Though the fifty-acre tract in Takoma Park was situated a mile or so beyond the District line, yet the locating committee were able to purchase in the same village sufficient land lying within the District line to serve as a site for the factory building of the Review and Herald Publishing Association. Adjacent lots were secured for the General Conference administration building and for the local church edifice and church school. LS 395.2

Thus the way was opening, step by step, for the early removal of the Review and Herald printing plant and the General Conference offices from Battle Creek, Mich., to the nation's capital. Only a few weeks elapsed before actual transfers were made, and the brethren established themselves in temporary rented quarters in the heart of the city, pending the erection of buildings at Takoma Park. LS 395.3