Basic island data


Location: Anacostia River, District of Columbia, US


Coordinates: 38.897° N, 76.964° W


Area: c. 96 acres / 39 hectares


High point: c. 20 feet / 6 meters


Population: uninhabited


Alternate names:

– Former alternate: National Children’s Island

– Former alternate: Children’s Island



– Coordinates: mapping, viewed August 2009.

– Area: measurements from US Geological Survey topographic mapping.

– Alternate names: Carroll B. Harvey, “An Island for the Kids,” Washington Post, August 18, 1996, C8; “Washington, D.C. Street and Visitor’s Guide” map, American Automobile Association, 1996; Charles C. Verharen, “On Washington’s Other Waterfront,” Washington Post, April 28, 1996, C8.

– Ownership: “Update on the Anacostia Park Wetlands Management Plan with Resident Canada Goose Management Strategies,” National Park Service, 2008.

– History: construction -- Lena H. Sun, “D.C. on the Verge of Gaining Two Islands,” Washington Post, July 17, 1996, B5; victory gardens – Washington Post, December 1, 1996, B5; trash dumping – Debbi Wilgoren, “D.C. Environmental Refuge Eyed,” Washington Post, May 11, 2005, B1; National Children’s Island: ““Children's Island First Amended and Restated Lease and Grant of Easement Emergency Approval Resolution of 1997, PR-12-434,”, September 30, 1997.



Kingman Island


Kingman Island is the largest island in the Anacostia River, in eastern Washington DC.  At about 96 acres, it is the third-largest island in the District of Columbia.


The southern half of the island is largely wooded, and is owned by the District of Columbia.  The northern portion is part of Langston Golf Course, within the National Park Service’s Anacostia Park.


Benning Road crosses the center of the island, and the elevated track of the Metro Orange Line passes over the island at this point.  Access is also provided by footbridges to the mainland via Heritage Island.


The island and its neighbors were constructed from dredged material in 1916.


People grew “victory gardens” on the island during World War II.  The island was used as a dumpsite for trash during the 20th century.


In 1996, the south end of the island was transferred to the District of Columbia from the National Park Service for development as “National Children’s Island;” the project did not go forward.  One person was murdered on the island in the 1990s.


Trash cleanup and environmental restoration were carried out on the island in the 2000s.


An environmental education center is planned for the island.







Kingman Island scene.jpg


Metro train passing over Kingman Island


Image copyright – usable with link and attribution




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--------------------------- Copyright 1995-2009 Joshua Calder

Contact Joshua Calder at calder.josh[at] with questions or suggestions. 

island geography / biggest island