The Old Stone House was built in 1765, making it the oldest standing building in Washington, DC. The exterior of the house if constructed of locally quarried blue granite. The house was built by Christopher Layman, a cabinetmaker by trade, as both a residence and a shop. Layman died shortly after constructing the house. It was sold to Cassandra Chew who added a wing to the rear of the house in 1767. The street (then called Bridge Street) was a main thoroughfare for road traffic from the Western frontier and paralleled the canal into Georgetown. The house has been used throughout its history as a residence or residence/shop, until it was purchased in 1953 by the U.S. Government. The Old Stone House is also a contributing property to the Georgetown Historic District, a National Historic Landmark. Today, the home is 85% original to its 18th century construction.
Visitors are greeted by Park Rangers who tell the history of the oldest structure in Washington DC. The kitchen, parlor and bedrooms, furnished as they would have been in the late 18th century, are open for viewing. A gift shop operated by Eastern National is located inside the front room of the house. The garden is used for simple wedding ceremonies and as an area for locals and tourists to rest while shopping or to enjoy a lunch break.