North Brentwood was the first African-American
incorporated Town in the Prince George's County.
It is situated six miles northeast of the ellipse
between Mt. Rainier and Hyattsville, Maryland.
North Brentwood was originally part of the "Castle Tract", later
known as the "Highlands". In 1887 Captain Wallace Bartlett formed
Holladay Land and Improvement Division. He sold plots of land in the low area,
subject to flooding, to African-Americans. He dedicated this land in memory
of the black regiment which served under him in the civil war. Land was designated
for churches and a school.
In 1898 the trolley line of the Columbia and Maryland Railway Company was completed
through Randall Town (Name of first settlers, The Randall Family).
In 1902 the first school opened in Randall Town with Henry and Peter Randall
In 1904 The Holladay Land Company expands and replots 40 additional acres as
a subdivision. The subdivision was named "Brentwood" after the Brent
Estate in Northeast Washington, DC.
In 1905 the First Baptist Church was organized under the leadership of Rev.
James L. Jasper.
In 1907 Mr. William Conway organized "The Brentwood Colored Citizens Association" to
provide the members an opportunity for educational, scientific, literary, musical,
social and other beneficial endeavors.
In 1905 Jeremiah Hawkins moved into the town, purchased several lots, built
a house and became politically active. He was elected as a delegate to the
Republican National Convention in Kansas City in 1920. North Brentwood was
incorporated under the leadership of Mr. Hawkins in 1924 and he became the
first mayor. His cabinet members were Peter Randall and Madison Brown - Councilmen,
Squire Garland - Police Justice; William Norton - Town Clerk and John Gilmore
- Treasurer. In 1946 the "Flashes" for the first and last time under
the qualified management of Donald Smith became the first sandlot team to play
in Griffith Stadium, Washington, DC.
In 1952, the municipal building was constructed
through volunteer labor of the citizens under
the leadership of Mayor William D. Bellows.
In 1975, the North Brentwood Community Center,
operated by the Maryland National Capital Park
and Planning Commission was opened.
In 1985 the North Brentwood flag was designed by Mrs. Victoria Welborne and
Mr. Perry Wheaton.
In 1991 the Historical Society was organized by Lillian K. Beverly. After the
organization of the group, data was collected by the society to verify the
historical significance of North Brentwood. The project committee, under the
leadership of Mrs. Ruth Wilson and attorney Orlando C. Hobbs, developed "Footsteps
From North Brentwood". This oral, pictorial and artifact collection of
life in North Brentwood from the 1900s to 1930, after completion was on display
at the Anacostia Smithsonian Museum from July 1996 to January 1997. Part of
the exhibit was moved the North Brentwood Community Center at that time, where
it hung until May 1997 before moving to the State House in Annapolis. The collection
was placed in storage at the Anacostia Smithsonian Museum in December 1997
after the Annapolis viewing. The Mayor and Town Council of North Brentwood
is developing plans for construction of a town museum to house our collection.
We also plan to use the museum for developing projects that will encourage
partnerships through education in our schools and increase participation of
area residents in the arts. We are hoping these projects will enable all of
our children to gain a sense of identity.
From the inception of the incorporation until the 40s, the town contained many
privately owned business establishments, among them a dairy, a coal yard, ice
house, beauty and barber shops, grocery stores, restaurants, a private school
and a shoe repair shop.
Eleven mayors have served the town since its incorporation. They are listed
according to the term of office, namely, Jeremiah Hawkins, William T. Allen,
George Lucas, Julius Wheeler, John Gilmore, Sandy P. Baker, William d. Bellows,
Labarre P. Thornton, Raymond A. Hall. William d. Bellows, Raymond A. Hall,
Sandy P. Johnson and Arthur Dock.
Lillian K. Beverly is the First woman to be elected during the seventy-five years of incorporation in the Town of North Brentwood. Previous Councilwoman (12 years) and clerk (12 years), Petrella Robinson was elected Mayor on May 7, 2007
The Town of North Brentwood has always had since its beginning, a group of
dedicated, civic minded citizens who organized, voted and persevered to improve
even though at times, they were faced with what appeared to be at the time
Historical data excerpts are from "Footsteps from North Brentwood" a
Maryland Humanities Funded Project, Historical Research of the North Brentwood