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The Bethesda Post Office was one of three post offices built in Montgomery County under the Works Progress Administration (others in Rockville and Silver Spring). The post office was built in 1938, in the Classical Revival style, with native Stoneyhurst stone. The Bethesda Chevy Chase High School in Bethesda was also constructed under the Works Progress Administration. The Post Office had an addition to the North side in 1966. The original portion features a hipped roof, arched windows, and a cupola. Inside, a mural by Robert Gates depicts the Bethesda Farm Women Market. Four pilasters support an engraving with the words "United States Post Office, Bethesda, Maryland." The office closed in 2012 and is today vacant after a fitness studio closed in 2020.

Bethesda Post Office

Building, Property, Sky, Window

Picture frame, Paint, Textile, Art

The first post office in Bethesda was probably at the Bethesda Meeting House, in 1852. However, it closed within 6 months. Later, a general store owned by William E Darcy, at the intersection of Rockville Pike and Old Georgetown Road, operated a post office. The community was known as Darcy's Store after the general store, but in 1871, by the urging of the pastor of the Bethesda meeting house, the name of the community was officially changed to Bethesda. Later, the Post Office operated from Wilson's Store (Community Hardware).

During the Great Depression, President Franklin D Roosevelt established economic programs known as the New Deal, including the Works Progress Administration, which aimed to provide jobs to Americans and improve American infrastructure. The Bethesda Chamber of Commerce created a committee to persuade David Lewis, the local congressmen to set aside WPA money for a new post office as the one at Wilson's Store was inadequate for the population growth Bethesda had experienced.

In June of 1936, 115,000 dollars was set aside for the new post office. The lot at 7400 Wisconsin was purchased for 45,000, while 54,000 dollars was given to builders Sofarelli Brothers of Jamaica, NY. The stone, from Stoneyhurst Quarrys on River Road, was also used in the Bank of Bethesda, and downtown shopping centers. When the post office closed in 2012, the mural depicting the Farm Women's Market was moved to the Bethesda Chevy Chase Regional Services Center.

Clare Lise Kelly, Places from the Past: The Tradition of Gardez Bien in Montgomery County, Maryland (Silver Spring, Md.: Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, 2001), 282, accessed March 30, 2021,

Levine, Hank. Bethesda Post Office, Bethesda Historical Society. Accessed March 30th 2021.

Memorandum, "Maryland Historical Trust State Historic Trusts Form, M: 35-14-5," n.d., accessed March 30, 2021,;%2035-14-5.pdf.