Washington, D.C. was never a particularly industrial city. Goods largely had to be imported. Industrial buildings, such as the George M. Barker Company Warehouse, were scattered throughout the city's streets and alleys in an era before zoning. Originally, the building stood in close proximity to stores, rowhouses, and a theater. The warehouse was primarily used to distribute much needed lumber, coal, and wood. It is a two-story brick structure featuring heavy timber framing and a brick and terracotta facade, with the central entry and loft door once serving as a loading area for delivery trucks and wagons.
Today, the building is occupied by Bread for the City, a local organization dedicated to providing underprivileged D.C. residents with a variety of social services in a respectful environment. Above the door is written their slogan: Dignity, Respect, Service.1 The warehouse was added to the National Register of Historic Places on August 26, 2008.