Peachwood Neighborhood Park features a playground, multi-use field, an exercise station, and two tennis courts. The picnic area includes an open shelter.
History: A Self-sufficient Women’s Commune (1903-1946)
From 1903-1946, this land was part of the Commonwealth Farm. Operated by the Women’s Commonwealth of Washington, the 119-acre farm boasted fields, orchards, livestock, and a popular restaurant and inn. Wealthy and politically connected Washingtonians traveled here to enjoy “toothsome old Maryland dishes, such as fried chicken and cream gravy, corn bread, tall pitchers of buttermilk, and such ice cream as one seldom tastes…”
The restaurant made the Women’s Commonwealth economically self-sufficient at a time when women were often in subordinate roles. Established in Texas by Martha McWhirter in the late 1860s, the group believed in sanctification, non-sectarianism, and celibacy. The founding members left their husbands to set up communal households together.
After running several successful businesses, the group used their wealth to retire to Washington, D.C. in 1898. They ran a boarding house with a small farm and spent time on social causes including women’s suffrage. A few years later they bought land in Maryland and began the Commonwealth Farm. By 1946 only two members were living and most of the farmland had been sold. A stone retaining wall that once lined the driveway is still visible from New Hampshire Avenue, south of Good Hope Road.
For more on the Commonwealth Farm, including a video, visit Montgomery Planning’s Historic Preservation Office.