NW Quadrant, East of Rock Creek, Showbiz, Spies

Roald Dahl
(September 13, 1916 - November 23, 1990)

2136 R St. NW, Sheridan Circle neighborhood, DC.

Dahl is best known as a children's author of such classics as James and the Giant Peach (1961), Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (1964), and Fantastic Mr. Fox (1970).

Born in Wales, Dahl served in the British Royal Air Force in World War II. In 1942 he was transferred to DC as Assistant Air Attache, and began his writing career while living here with his first published essay, "Shot Down Over Libya," describing his war experiences, which was published in The Saturday Evening Post. He also worked as a British spy during this time, working with the Canadian master spy William Stephenson.

In addition to writing for children, Dahl wrote macabre short fiction for adults, winning three Edgar Awards from the Mystery Writers of America. In the 1960s, Dahl also wrote screenplays for such movies as You Only Live Twice (a James Bond film) and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. He wrote two novels, three collections of poetry for children, three books of memoirs, and 14 collections of short fiction, including Lambs to the Slaughter (1953), Switch Bitch (1974), and Tales of the Unexpected (1979).