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Over 35,000 people attended the dedication ceremony for the Lincoln Memorial in 1922, ten years after construction began. At the ceremony, President Warren G. Harding, former president and Chief Justice of the Supreme Court Howard Taft, and Robert…

This design of the Statue of Freedom was rejected for its reference to slavery. It was one of three designs developed by sculptor Thomas Crawford for the top of the Capitol dome. In 1856, he proposed a statue with a “Liberty Cap.” This style of…

In 1855, Congress commissioned Thomas Crawford to build a statue to top the cast-iron Capitol dome. Two years later, Crawford created the plaster model in Rome and sent it to the US for casting. The bronze was cast at a foundry in Washington DC under…

In his annual report for the year 1856, Secretary of the Smithsonian Joseph Henry complained that Congress had not provided money in the Smithsonian's budget to maintain the Institution's grounds. As a result, he said that the area around the…

Sculptor Alexander Calder designed "Gwenfritz" in 1965 after Washington philanthropist Gwendolyn Cafritz commissioned him to create a piece for the new Museum of History and Technology. Calder built the 40-foot tall metal stabile in France and…

Since the 1770s, American indigenous people have always served in the US military at a higher rate than other groups. In 1994, a bipartisan congressional effort passed the Native American Veterans’ Memorial Establishment Act to authorize the…

In 1922, Congress received a proposal from the Washington, DC, chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy to create the "Faithful Slave Mammies of the South" memorial recognizing the supposed loyalty of enslaved women to their owners during…

The first national memorial to specifically honor members of the American armed forces who were permanently disabled during their service opened in 2014. The memorial was proposed to Congress in 1998 by a group led by philanthropist Lois Pope; Jesse…

The John Stevens Shop is a stone carving workshop based in Rhode Island and currently co-owned by the father and son team of John E. and Nicholas Benson. They have been involved in the design and execution of lettering for inscriptions for four…

The artist in this photograph is carving one of the many inscriptions found in the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial. Calligrapher and stone carver John Benson, designed the layout and typeface of the inscriptions. Each letter was carved and…
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