Other Memorials / Monuments, Washington D.C.
Another sculpture that is not well known and is great for photo ops is the 12-foot sculpture of Albert Einstein seated on a bench in front of the National Academy of Sciences.
Constructed in 1979, it was designed by sculptor Robert Berks and financed by over 5,000 contributors to commemorate the centennial of the birth of the great scientist.
Walking from the Lincon Memorial southwards to the West Potomac Park I stopped by a large, white marble and granite monument (Independence Avenue & Ohio Drive) which portrayed a larger-than-life-size figure of a seated guy and three standing allegoric figures representing Vision, Adventure, and Labor behind. The figures surround a Norse Tree of Life.
The monument, dedicated in 1926, commemorates Swedish immigrant to the USA, John Ericsson (1803-1889). He was a naval engineer who perfected the screw propeller, a revolutionary means of moving heavy ships through water which was very important for the Union forces required improved marine transportation during the Civil War (1861 - 1865). He experimented with solar energy and worked on a system of launching underwater torpedoes. It's said that he was so strange person that many Naval personnel disliked working with him. Hmm... many geniuses, especially prominent inventors, scientists and artists were strangers, right? What about travellers and VT-ers? :-)
This wonderful mural is located within the Lincoln Memorial on the interior walls. Make sure you wonder around inside so you do not miss other wonderful pieces of art.
The public may visit the Lincoln Memorial 24 hours a day. However Rangers are on duty to answer questions from 9:30 A.M. to 11:30 P.M. daily.
National Mall and Memorial Parks
900 Ohio Drive SW
Washington, DC 20024
The Tidal Basin consist of a 1.72 mile walkway that is bordered by the Washington Monument Grounds, West Potomac Park, the Potomac River and East Potomac Park. It is a ideal way of seeing the Thomas Jefferson Memorial, Cherry Blossoms when in bloom, or just a great way to enjoy the day or evening.
It is an ideal place to take a relaxing stroll or an early morning run. Visitors and locals will enjoy the fantastic vistas of Jefferson Memorial and the Washington Monument. It was built in the late 1900's as part of West Potomac Park to provide recreational space and as a means for draining the Washington Channel after high tide.
If you do decided to stroll around here at night, make sure you are not alone because it is dark and if during the summer months, you might want insect repellant.
My girlfriend said the Einstein Memorial was her favorite off-the-beaten-path monument in the city so I went out of my way to find it on back-to-back days. She told me that if you stood in the middle and spoke to Einstein your voice would be amplified back, but only you could hear it. I couldn't figure out what she was talking about when I was there the first time, so I called her and went back the next day to try again. Sure enough, stand in the center of the constellation, look right at Einstein and speak, and you will hear your voice oddly amplified. I guess its the semi-circular base of the monument that creates that effect.
The memorial was dedicated in 1979 and consists of the aforementioned semicircular granite base, with a platform containing 2700 metal studs representing the stars of the sky the day the memorial was dedicated. The centerpiece is a bronze sculpture of Einstein where he looks like a chubby Muppet holding a bronze book with his most important equations etched into it. He must have written his works with a chisel. The equations on his pad describe the the photoelectric effect, the theory of general relativity, and most famous is E=mc2, the equivalence of energy and matter.
The Einstein Memorial sits in front of the National Academy of Sciences on Constitution Avenue, near the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.
There's a big bronze statue of Albert Einstein very near the National Academy of Sciences. It's pretty much across from the Washington mall, and a very short 5 minute walk from the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.
He's holding in his had a sheet of paper, with his 3 most famous expressions...Equivalence of energy and matter (E=MC2), theory of relativity, and Photoelectric effect.
Constitution Ave. & 22nd St NW (N of Const, E of 22nd (Nat'l Academy of Sciences))
Nearby Metro Stations: Foggy Bottom-GWU (Orange, Blue) All nearby
John Marshall (1755-1835) was the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. He was a powerful orator and distinguished legislator from the state of Virginia. He was a lawyer and Revolutionary Hero and later served as Secretary of State in the Adams administration. He became Chief Justice in 1801 and is credited with making the Supreme Court the final word in law in this country and for making the judiciary the third and equal arm of government in our system.
Located walking distance from The Captol and near the Supreme Court building and the Smithsonian. Around the corner from the Canadian Embassy.
Metro- Judiciary Square
This is a somewhat "different" monument. The fountain was given to the city by Dr Henry Cogswell in 1882. He believed that providing clean drinking water would keep people from drinking alcoholic beverages. The Women's Christian Temperance Union later went forward with Cogswell's ideas, trying to implement the construction more public drinking fountains. Part of the reason for these fountains was that at the time beer was in many ways safer than water, while tea and coffee were too expensive.
On the four sides of the fountain are the words: Faith, Hope, Charity and Temperance. The water came out of the snouts of two intertwined dolphins. On top is a heron.
Eventually the city disconnected the water pipes as it cost too much to keep it up.
The Temperance fountain is located at 7th and Indiana Avenue, across from the Navy Memorial. Ironically, for a long time it was located directly in front of a liquor store.
A lot of people seem to think this is one of the ugliest memorials in the city (at least visually). What do you think?
If you are on your way to the Jefferson Memorial, make this tiny little detour. Off to the left, in West Potomac Park, is the memorial to George Mason. It really is easy to see how a lot of people never get to see this memorial. It is labelled, but its not a very big memorial so you can easily miss it. Dedicated in 2002 by President Bush, it is one of the newer Memorials.
George Mason (1725-1792) was one of the Founding Fathers of the United States. He wrote the Virginia Declaration of Rights and served in the Constitutional Convention. He did not, however, sign the Constitution because it did not ban the further importation of slaves and did not afford the individual sufficient protection from government. Interestingly. Mason was a Virginia planter, and a slaveholder, however he did not want slavery to be spread to any new states.
A true Renaissance Man, Mason had no formal education and had educated himself from his uncles library.
This memorial honors the memory of over 19,000 law enforcement officers who have died in the line of duty. The Memorial was dedicated in 1991 and every year on May 13, during National Police Week, there is a Candlelight Vigil where they add the new names to the wall. The names belong to law enforcement officers from state,local and federal branches.
Family members and friends will go to pay respects. Please be respectful. This is a very emotional place. Unfortunately, this memorial, and I think it is an important one, is a bit out of the way. The information office/visitor center is a few blocks away- a somewhat disjointed effort really. I personally would have liked it more if they had someone there on site to provide information.
THE WICKED FLEE
WHEN NO MAN PURSUETH
BUT THE RIGHTEOUS
ARE BOLD AS A LION
(on Northeast corner of the memorial)
Location- behind the National Building Museum.
Metro- Judiciary Square
Most visitors to Washington might have heard Farragut North, which is a stop on the Red Line (Connecticut Ave & K Street). To locals this is at the center of the city, right in the middle of the K Street Corridor where there are lots of law and professional offices. This area has been cleaned up considerably in the last 20 years, a lot of new tall buildings and a general sprucing up.
For the tourist this is a good place to rest, there is a nice shaded park close to plenty of restaurants, across the street from the Metro. If you want to get off at Farragut North all you have to do is walk across the park, cross over and you will be by the White House.
In the middle of the park is the statue of Admiral David Farragut, a Union admiral in the Civil War. He is famous for having said- damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead.
Oddly, the statue of Farragut says nothing at all about him, just "Farragut"
When I first saw the Taft Memorial on a map, I thought "I didn't know President Taft had a monument on the mall." I even visited the monument (in my defense it was long after dark) and still had no idea it was not for the President. As it turns out this monument is for Robert A. Taft, the son of President and Chief Justice of the Supreme Court William Howard Taft. Robert A. Taft was most famous as a senator from Ohio, and he served as Senate Majority Leader. He also failed in three attempts to garner the Republican Presidential nomination, losing once to President Dwight D. Eisenhower. He was named as one of the five greatest senators in US history, despite his opposition to successful programs such as the New Deal, the Nuremberg Trials, and even US involvement in World War II and NATO.
The Taft Memorial is located just north of the US Capitol, and it is comprised of a 10 foot bronze sculpture of Taft, a 100 foot tall marble tower, and 27 French bells in the tower, all surrounded by gentle fountains. The Taft Memorial was built in 1959.
Above the statue you will see these words: "This Memorial to Robert A. Taft, presented by the people to the Congress of the United States, stands as a tribute to the honesty, indomitable courage, and high principles of free government symbolized by his life." There are other quotes
You can probably be excused if the existence of the Boy Scout Memorial doesn't light an immediate flame of recognition in your eyes. Its on the Ellipse (now called President's Park) and to be honest most people are on the way to try to get a few good pictures of the White House so they might easily miss this memorial.
The Memorial was inaugurated in 1964 and is the work of sculptor Donald De Lue. Interestingly, the majority of this sculptor's public work seems to have been confederate war memorials. It honors the Boy Scouts of America as well as the men and women that have guided the scouting movement.
The scout in the middle of the sculpture is interestingly the only one of the three figures that is fully dressed, something that stands out against the muscular half nudity of the male figure. The Boy Scout is thought to symbolize the virtues of good physical, mental and moral fitness as exemplified in the Boy Scout Oath. The male figure, presumably the father...carries a helmet. Why a helmet, usually a symbol of war, in a movement that is inherently peaceful. Perhaps that is the exemplification of patriotism, one of the central values of the Boy Scout movement. The female figure carries the eternal flame of God's Holy Spirit.
The Boy Scout movement in this country has become embroiled in continuing controversy based on the ideological orientation of its leadership and the interests behind that. Sad indeed
Forgive me for doing a "drive by" of a national monument with my camera. I will be back when I'm with a few others to actually explore the place, but by yourself in Anacostia is not where you want to be unless you want to see a real drive by.
The historic site is the home Frederick Douglass purchased in 1877 and named Cedar Hill. Frederick Douglass was a great American, an escaped slave, an abolitionist and proponent for emancipation and later civil rights, and even a Vice Presidential Candidate.
As you could expect by the grandeur of the mansion, Douglass lived at this house later in his life after he had become famous. During his time at Cedar Hill, Douglass was appointed a United States Marshal in 1877, he was appointed Recorder of Deeds for the District of Columbia in 1881, and his wife, Anna Murray Douglas, died in 1882. Later he married a white woman named Helen Pitts then in the 1888 Republican National Convention Douglass received the first delegate vote for president ever given to a black man.
Douglass died in Washington, DC in 1895 at the age of 77.
Washington DC was first surveyed in 1791 and 1792 by Andrew Ellicott. The city was partly in Maryland and partly in Virginia in a square shape 10 miles on each side. Each side of the square was marked by 10 boundary stones for a total of 40 stones around the city. The first stone was placed at Jones Point in Alexandria, VA.
In 1915 the Daughters of the American Revolution protected the boundary stones by placing a fence around each and performing routine maintenance.
Today 37 of the original boundary stones survive. 14 of the original stone locations are in the state of Virginia, in the city of Alexandria or Arlington County since this part of DC was retroceeded back to Virginia prior to the Civil War.