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In 1912 John Russell Pope submitted several entries to the design competition for the Lincoln Memorial. They were each distinct from one another. This submission was a unique pyramid design. Known as the Ziggurat Style, this style features middle…

In 1867, Congress formed the Lincoln Monument Association to commission a memorial for the late president. They chose this design by sculptor Clark Mills. Mills was known in Washington for designing a statue of Andrew Jackson that stands near the…

In 1877 Congress appropriated funds so that the building of the Washington Monument could continue. Budget problems had halted construction in 1854. But after sitting untouched for more than 20 years many worried that a new design was needed for the…

In 1799 Architect Benjamin Henry Latrobe submitted this proposal for the Washington Monument. The design was meant to be incorporated into the original design of Washington, DC, but budget problems prevented its construction. The plan included 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 original building which housed the Department of Agriculture was designed in 1867 by Adolf Cluss, the same architect who designed the Smithsonian Arts and Industry Building. For decades, this building housed offices, research laboratories, and…

The first teahouse in Hains Point, the southernmost tip of East Potomac Park, was a refreshment stand opened in 1920 and run by local Girl Scouts. It was very popular, and in 1922 construction began on a permanent structure with restrooms, which…

Benjamin Latrobe drew a plan for the layout of a national university on the Mall while he was Surveyor to the Capitol building. He may have been inspired to do so by President James Madison's mention of the idea of creating a national university in…

President George Washington and city planner Pierre L'Enfant chose the land for the new capital of the United States, in part, because of the beauty of its landscape. Rolling hills, the meeting point of two rivers, flat lands along the river banks,…

Tiber Creek raced through the city from the base of Capitol Hill to the Potomac River. In the early 1800s, it was about 800 feet wide, flowing just below the hill where White House was built. Swimmers, boaters, and fishermen navigated its waters.…
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