When Larz Anderson, a wealthy American diplomat, died in 1937, his widow donated their 50-room mansion - the Anderson House - and its contents in Dupont Circle to the Society of the Cincinnati - a prestigious male-only organization for descendants of officers in the American Revolutionary War, of which Larz was a long-time active member. By 1939, the Society opened it to the public as a museum and library, showcasing the Andersons' impressive collection of Chinese, Japanese, French, and Italian art, as well as the importance of the family in American history.
The stately Anderson House was designed in the Beaux-Arts style and has been described as a "Florentine villa in the midst of American independence." The Anderson House was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1996 and is considered to be one of the city's hidden treasures. Today, the Anderson House serves as the Society's headquarters and aims to preserve Larz's legacy of patriotic service and entertaining guests and offers several free concerts a year in the grand ballrooms and on the expansive grounds.
The Anderson House is located off the north exit of Dupont Metro Station on the red line. Museum tours commence Tuesday through Saturday from 1:00-4:00pm, last approximately one hour, and are free of charge. The library, where a register resides to find out if your ancestors were officers in the Revolutionary War, is open Monday through Friday from 10:00am - 4:00pm. Reservations are only necessary for groups larger than 10 people.