Author Archives: Rick

The man behind two metro stops – David Farragut

You know the person much be important when two metro stops are named for him. David Farragut was a Civil War admiral who uttered the saying now paraphrased, “Damn the torpedos, full speed ahead.” He said it differently, but history … Continue reading

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The Park Bench Statesman: Bernard Baruch

Sometimes those old guys sitting in the park are worth listening to their advice. Bernard Baruch became wealthy by 1900 speculating in sugar futures on Wall Street. The son of a surgeon that served on Robert E. Lee’s staff during … Continue reading

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Mountain and Clouds will blow your mind

My first thought when entering the lobby of the Senate Hart Office Building – was it this big piece of junk? A few minutes later when viewing it from the seventh of nine floors, my second thought – Oh, I … Continue reading

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Native Washingtonian 101 — Ted’s Bulletin

I have a new favorite restaurant in town – Ted’s Bulletin. I’m not quite sure how to describe the old-style eatery on 8th & E Sts. SE. Parts of it feel like the 1930s, others like the 1960s. Either way, … Continue reading

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Second to none: the Second Division Memorial

Between the White House and the Washington Monument, the Second Division Memorial on Constitution Ave. approaching 17th St. is another overlooked sculpture. It’s something people just pass by. The memorial commemorates the U.S. Army’s Second Division’s dead during World War … Continue reading

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Horse and Rider trots along

It looks like me ready to fall off, but sculptor Mario Marini’s Horse and Rider is considered an example of a man in control. Sure, if you say so. The seven-foot tall sculpture outside the Hirshhorn Museum is another of … Continue reading

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Washington National Cathedral inspires

Want to see an old Roman church in Washington, D.C.? The Washington National Cathedral is the closest thing I’ve found since touring Italy. You may recognize the world’s sixth largest church from televised events like late president Ronald Reagan’s funeral … Continue reading

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Lunar Bird makes your imagination soar

Like many things in the Hirshhorn Museum’s Sculpture Garden, Lunar Bird is a bit of a mystery. The best guess is it’s an imaginary bird with a symbol of the moon for a head, small wings and thick legs. A … Continue reading

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Who’s the boss? Why ‘Boss’ Shepherd, of course

George Washington may be the father of our country and namesake for the our town, but Alexander Robey Shepherd, better known as “Boss Shepherd,” is considered “The Father of Modern Washington.” Shepherd actually stopped an 1870s movement to relocate the … Continue reading

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Save George Washington, get a statue

Brigadier General Casimir Pulaski was a Polish count who came to America to fight for freedom. He once saved George Washington’s life, but is best known for teaching American troops the discipline needed to fight the mighty British troops. Pulaski … Continue reading

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Happy 4th of July

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The real George Mason

                George Mason is hanging out not far from fellow founding father Thomas Jefferson in West Potomac Park. The George Mason Memorial remembers the “Forgotten Founder” who wrote the Virginia Declaration of Rights … Continue reading

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If you’re a plane or space junkie . . . worth the trip

For years I’ve heard great things about the The Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center. Drove by the entrance plenty of times without stopping just like hundreds of other local attractions. It’s worth the trip to the Chantilly, Va.  venue near Dulles … Continue reading

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Lily Pond: art for art’s sake, I guess

On this site was the first water to be piped through the streets for city residents. I’ll let you have a moment to absorb all that. The Lily Pond in John Marshall Park at 4th and C Sts. N.W. by … Continue reading

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There are no boundaries to art

Sponge Bob is better known than a plumbob, but at the National Building Museum you’ll see the latter. Bordering the museum on 4th, 5th, F and G Sts. NW, the Boundary Markers are 10-feet tall with a brick base and … Continue reading

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U.S. Botanic Gardens more than a greenhouse

One of the joys of becoming a tour guide is stopping at places I’ve driven past a million times. High on the list is the U.S. Botanic Garden on 1st and Maryland Ave. S.W. on the footstep of the U.S. … Continue reading

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John Paul Jones Memorial lost in traffic

One of the feistiest American admirals of all time has been marooned on a traffic island. John Paul Jones is on a spit of land at the intersection of 17th St. and Independence Ave. SW just a few yards from … Continue reading

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Firefighter monument suddenly No. 2

I’ve determined Washington Post columnist John Kelly secretly wishes he was a Washington tour guide. If not, he’d sure make a fine one. (Must be career wanderlust. As a Washington Post Express sports columnist, I always wanted to be a … Continue reading

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A family funeral at Arlington National Cemetery

It’s one thing to pass the endless white stones while leading visitors through Arlington National Cemetery. And it’s another to have a long ago family member buried there but never knowing them like my grand uncle. But this time it … Continue reading

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Native Washingtonian 101 – It’s not D.C.

Locals refer to themselves as Washingtonians. We don’t say D.C. At most we’ll refer to the city as “The District.” I really hate this new “DMV” trend. That’s the Dept. of Motor Vehicles, not D.C.-MD-VA. Suburbanites will say D.C., usually … Continue reading

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