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“John Welcker, a German immigrant who first settled in New York, traveled to Washington in 1861 with New York troops at the outbreak of the Civil War. As early as 1862, he appears in the Washington City Directories as owner of Buhler’s Restaurant at 322 Pennsylvania Avenue. In 1865 at last, he changed its name into Welcker’s Restaurant. Before 1870, Welcker’s Restaurant moved to 721-727 15th Street NW. After John Welcker’s death in 1875, his widow continued his business, and she married his partner Theophilus Felter. In 1884, Felter contracted with Cluss and Schulze for the six-story extension. As late as 1890, Welcker’s Hotel and Restaurant existed under that name and at the same adress. Located only two blocks from the White House and one block from the Treasury Department, it was known as one of Washington’s finest restaurants of the time, attracting, in the words of one observer, ‘the rich and the famous'”

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