Kensington is a town with a rich, historic past and a vibrant present. The sound of a train whistle still permeates throughout the town, reminiscent of Kensington’s sleepier origins in 1873. Today, residents and visitors alike visit the charming train station for a weekly farmer’s market and concerts. The streets are alive with art galleries, music venues, enticing restaurants, eclectic gift shops and antique stores. On the edges of the vibrant business district are beautiful 19th century Victorian homes and parks and a unique children’s library. www.explorekensington.com
HISTORY OF THE TOWN OF KENSINGTON
Where the train still stops…And the people still walk.
The area around the Rock Creek basin where Kensington is located was primarily agricultural until 1873, when the B&O Railroad completed the Metropolitan Branch which traversed Montgomery County. A community arose where the new railroad line intersected the old Rockville-to-Bladensburg
road. This early settlement was first known as Knowles Station. In the early 1890s, Washington, D.C. developer Brainard Warner began purchasing land parcels to build a planned Victorian community, complete with church, library, and a local newspaper. Fascinated by a recent trip to London, Warner first named his town Kensington Park. Upon incorporation in 1894, the town was renamed Kensington. The historic core of Kensington was listed on the National Register of Historic Places, as the Kensington Historic District in 1980.
Initially Kensington was a summer refuge for Washington, D.C., residents wishing to escape the capital’s humid summers. As years passed and its residents increasingly remained year round, Kensington evolved into a commuter suburb. The large southernmost section originally mapped out by Warner remains largely unchanged since inception, and is a historically preserved zone. Indeed the only major changes in the town’s basic layout have been the bridging over of the original railroad crossing in 1937, and the extension and widening of Connecticut Avenue, the town’s main thoroughfare, in 1957.
Town of Kensington
Town offices located at Kensington Town Center/Armory at Armory Ave & Mitchell St.
Kensington Historical Society
The Society maintains a library of publications, newspaper clippings and photographs at their Archives in the Town Hall. The Archives are open Friday mornings 9:30 to 12 and by appointment. KHS also presents educational programs, community concerts, hosts semi-annual social events, and publishes a quarterly newsletter and yearly calendar honoring some feature of historic Kensington
Kensington Farmer’s Market – every Saturday morning 8-12 year-round
THE FARMER’S MARKET IS BURSTING WITH ACTIVITY! Every Saturday from 8 am-12 noon, the MARC Train Station on Howard Avenue comes alive with vendors selling a wide variety of fresh produce, seafood, meats, breads, olive oil products, cut flowers, bedding plants and herbs.
Old Town Kensington Merchant Association
Through the years, Antique Row has grown to include more than 80 shops. Our merchants specialize in everything from the finest antiques to the quirkiest collectibles. We also offer bookstores, art galleries, new crafts and gifts, design shops and salons and three eating establishments.
Kensington Business District Association
The Kensington Business District Association (KBDA) was officially established in 1992 to represent the interests of businesses operating in Kensington Maryland 20895. Easily accessible via auto and other public transportation (Marc Train, Ride-On Bus, or Metrobus and Metrorail), Kensington boasts more than 300 businesses from a variety of disciplines including service, professional, retail, restaurant, government and health care.
Kensington Arts Theatre…it will change the way you see
Performances at the Kensington Town Center
Pursuing and enacting provocative musical theater which evokes questions and challenges presumptions about the world around us.