Robert Pohl

Robert Pohl worked for many years as a computer programmer but recovered from that and became a full time stay-at-home dad. With his son now in school, he has expanded his horizons and become a self-taught historian. He has written books about his house as well as Emancipation in the District of Columbia. You can reach Robert at Robert[at]

Robert Pohl
21 Jan 2020


Lost Capitol Hill: In the Shadow of the United States Capitol

I was recently contacted by the authors of this book and sent a review copy. I had seen it previously and thought that I should probably read it, but thought that it was just going to cover territory that I already knew. As it turned out, I was quite wrong in this assessment. There was […]

13 Jan 2020


Lost Capitol Hill: Aaron Burr

I mentioned last week that I had looked through the books at for those that had gone out of copyright at the beginning of the year. While the reminiscences of the Civil War on Capitol Hill was obviously the more striking, there was another book that caught my eye: Rider’s Washington: A Guide Book […]

06 Jan 2020


Lost Capitol Hill: Civil War Memories

Another new year, another spate of newly-out-of-copyright books. This year, I discovered a brief (under 40 page) memoir of growing up in Washington during the Civil War. It was written by Elizabeth K. Vincent in 1924, so as of January 1 of this year, it is entirely unencumbered by any copyright restrictions. Elizabeth Kipp was […]

23 Dec 2019


Lost Capitol Hill: Michael Shiner in the Civil War

Over the last few weeks, I looked at Michael Shiner and his time during the Burning of Washington. Today, I want to look at another important moment in his life: The outbreak if the Civil War. By 1860, Shiner had been a free man for many years. He lived on Pennsylvania Avenue with his wife […]

16 Dec 2019


Lost Capitol Hill: Michael Shiner and the Burning of Washington

Last week, I properly introduced Michael Shiner, Capitol Hill diarist. Although, as with many aspects of Shiner’s life, it is impossible to say when he wrote down his memories, that which can be confirmed by other sources indicates the accuracy of his memory– down to events that happened when he was quite young. For instance, […]

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