Clara Barton House

31 March 2023

In 1943, President Franklin D. Roosevelt declared March to be Red Cross Month to raise awareness of the organization and its mission.

Clara Barton, the founder of the American Red Cross, was a visionary, humanitarian, teacher, social reformer, and self-trained nurse. Before she was nicknamed the “Angel of the Battlefield” she was one of the first women to work for the federal government forging new frontiers for women in the workplace. Clara earned the nickname for her heroic efforts in both caring for soldiers on the battlefield and to bringing assistance to Americans suffering from disasters.

Henry Adams is honored to provide the MEP and fire protection design services for the repair and rehabilitation of the historic Clara Barton House in Glen Echo, Maryland. The house, which is managed by the National Park Service, has been on the National Register of Historic Places since 1966. The property, which is the first national historic site dedicated to the accomplishments of a woman, was designated as a National Historic Site in 1974.

This project will repair and rehabilitate the 130-year-old House to provide greater interpretive opportunities and to provide for improved climate-controlled space for historic furnishings and finishes. The work will address the failing building envelope and the deteriorated building systems, including the mechanical, plumbing, and electrical systems which are over 40 years old.

The scope of work will consist of replacing existing HVAC equipment with a highly efficient variable refrigerant flow system using a combination of ducted and ductless indoor units. The electrical service to the building is being upgraded to handle the new HVAC system and an elevator. The existing electrical distribution system will be replaced and will include new light fixtures and emergency lighting. The telecommunications service, intrusion detection, and camera systems will also be updated. The plumbing scope includes replacing the plumbing system, including an electric water heater and plumbing fixtures as part of the construction of ABAAS-compliant restrooms in the Basement

The house is currently open to the public for visitation on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays and provides insight into the amazing life of Clara Barton and the home that once housed the American Red Cross headquarters.