In our scavenger hunt to find statues of American presidents in London, our final stop was the bust of JFK. However, on the way to John Fitzgerald Kennedy, we explored Fitzrovia, the nearby neighborhood that was home to some famous folks whose homes are marked by those wonderful English Heritage blue plaques.
Our first stop was a blue plaque marking the home of Samuel Morse, as in Morse code. Described on his plaque as “an American painter and inventor,” he lived in this Cleveland Street house from 1812-1815. I honestly did not know of his painting prowess – turns out, he was quite accomplished.
Another American communicator also lived in this neighborhood more than a century later – journalist Edward R.Murrow (84-88 Hallam Street). Murrow gained fame for his radio broadcasts during World War II.
Also in Fitzrovia, you will find Fitzroy Square, which looks like quintessential London. Seriously, you can easily picture the horse-drawn carriages and people in Victorian garb strolling down these streets.
On Fitzroy Square, there is a house with two (yes, two) plaques, marking the home of two literary heavyweights – playwright George Bernard Shaw and novelist Virginia Woolf. Yes, they lived in the same house. Looks like they missed each other by just nine years.
Shaw’s plaque is rectangular and brown, which we have seen on some homes. Woolf has the blue circle.
As always, the plaque pursuit leads to new discoveries. I will leave you with one such discovery- the amazing flowers on this pub. According to the Mason Arms website, the pub puts on “a spectacular exterior floral display.” Indeed! In fact, they say that the won the “London in Bloom Pub of the Year 2014.” That’s the summer when we saw it!