Browse Items (70 total)

Horatio Greenough's 1841 sculpture of George Washington has lived in 4 different locations on the Mall. Originally built for the US Capitol Rotunda, Congress did not like the statue and moved it outside to the east lawn 1 year later. Still unhappy…

From 1915 to 1935, there was a tennis court behind the Smithsonian Institution Castle, next to the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory in the South Yard. The court was created for the Smithsonian's tennis team, which played in intramural as well as…

This newspaper article was published in New York City in the mid 1790s, describing official plans for the developing federal city. Although an Act of Congress in 1790 had declared that Washington would be the national capital as of 1800, it was at…

This illustration accompanied an article discussing efforts to restart construction on the Washington Monument, with hopes to complete the monument by the national centennial in 1876. The point of view of the illustration is from the Mall's baseball…

Joseph Henry, the first secretary of the Smithsonian, and his family lived in the Smithsonian Institution Building, also called the Castle, from 1855 to 1878. This photograph, taken in 1862, shows Mr. Henry along with the whole family: Harriet…

Restoration of the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool began in November 2010. The two-year, $30.7 million renovation project almost completely rebuilt the structure. The 1923 original pool was built on an unstable foundation that sank and cracked. The…

This view down Pennsylvania Avenue NW from the corner of 6th Street shows part of Washington near the Mall around 1860. On the corner in the foreground, where the Newseum is today, stood the National Hotel, one of the most prominent hotels in the…

The ice skating rink at the National Gallery of Art’s Sculpture Garden is one of the Mall’s most popular winter activity spots. Open from November through March, the ice skating rink in its current form first opened in 1999. The rink was included…

For more than five decades, the Main Navy and Munitions Buildings dominated the scenery along Constitution Avenue for a third of a mile west of the Washington Monument. Erected in 1918 as "temporary" office buildings to support the vastly expanded…

During the Civil War, the Department of the Treasury hired women workers to fill clerical positions vacated by men who had left to fight with the Union Army. Until that time, clerking was strictly a male occupation. Believing women were particularly…
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