Tag Archives: best DC walking tours

Happy Memorial Day

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Oscar A. Strauss Memorial Fountain at Reagan Building

The Oscar A. Strauss Memorial Fountain at the Reagan Building along 14th St. N.W. was 20 years in the making. It was time well spent. Strauss was a German immigrant in the 1850s who become one of the top U.S. … Continue reading

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Jack Swigert – an American hero

Combat pilot, test pilot, astronaut and elected to Congress – it was quite a life for John Leonard “Jack” Swigert, Jr. A bronze statue of the Colorado Congressman-to-be stands in the Capitol Visitors Center. Made by George and Mark Lundeen, … Continue reading

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Have a drink, kill a president

  Lincoln Assassination What did John Wilkes Booth do the hour before killing Abraham Lincoln? Why, have a drink. Hey, if you’re going to assassinate a president you might want to drink some courage first. Booth spent one hour nursing … Continue reading

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Jose Artigas – The Gaucho Statue

He stands on a spit of land at 18th and Constitutional Aves., but Jose Artigas is another of the giants of South American revolution that dominate the blocks around the Organization of American States building. Artigas was a gaucho, typically … Continue reading

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The Lone Sailor is hardly alone

For someone who’s supposedly alone, The Lone Sailor usually has plenty of tourists around him. Part of the United States Navy Memorial at 7th and Pennsylvania Ave. N.W., The Lone Sailor is a tribute to all the personnel of the … 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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Remembering Jane Delano, founder of American Red Cross nurses

Jane Delano loved nursing so much that on her deathbed in France while inspecting hospitals during World War I, her last words were, “What about my work, I must get back to my work.” Born on March 12, 1862 near … Continue reading

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Native Washingtonian 101 – It’s “War-shington”

Want to sound like a local? Here’s the first clue – we say “War-shington.” Yes, we sneak an “r” in there. I don’t know why. It’s not because this town makes war on other countries. It’s just something we say … Continue reading

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Lafayette urns have their mystery

Much like the urns in the gardens of the Versailles Palace, these two Lafayette urns were forged in the same furnaces that created Union cannons in the Civil War. They were used for flowers in the late 1880s, but now … Continue reading

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A little statue in the corner has a story to tell

I love the Organization of American States building. It is absolutely fascinating and filled with overwhelming art projects both inside and out. One is tucked away from the front view, but you shouldn’t miss this one. Just to the right … Continue reading

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Czech leader Masaryk stands tall on Embassy Row

Tomas Masaryk stands tall – like 12 feet tall. It’s a good lifelike figure despite Czechoslovakia’s first president really only half that size. The bronze statue at the corners of Massachusetts Ave., Florida Ave. and Q St. N.W. remembers Masaryk, … Continue reading

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Police and fire boxes gain new life

I’ll admit not knowing the following story until becoming a tour guide. Like a lot of statues, I’d walk by these call boxes never knowing they were once the lifeline of police and firemen. It’s not often I find superb … Continue reading

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Simon Bolivar – ‘The George Washington of South America’

                                            I often wonder why other countries send statues of their heroes to our city. I mean, what do … Continue reading

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El Maiz is not corny

Sometimes sculptures are like a detective story. Thanks to the fine folks at the Museum of Modern Art of Latin America located on the 18th St. side of the Organization of American States, and a Yahoo translator, I finally figured … 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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The Polish general in Lafayette Square

General Thaddeus Kosciuszko was an American hero in so many ways. The Polish-born general of the Revolutionary War is one of four foreign-born general in the park largely for winning the battle of Saratoga, N.Y. The statue reflects Kosiuszko fighting … Continue reading

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The woman behind the man – Queen Isabella

We always know Columbus sailed the ocean blue in 14 hundred and 92. But, we rarely talk about the woman who funded the trip to the new world – Queen Isabella. The Spanish monarch is in front of the Organization … Continue reading

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Balinese Demons on Embassy Row

As regular readers know, I’m an average photographer. And sometimes it’s hard to get a good shot, especially when the gates are locked at an Embassy Row showstopper. Hence this photo. But here’s one of two Balinese Demons who guard … Continue reading

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Oh angel, why so sad?

I love statues in cemeteries. Angels intrigued me, especially when memorializing someone forever. Richard Rothwell and his wife Emma lie beneath a sighing angel in Congressional Cemetery. Rothwell was once paid by Congress for creating 20 centographs that remember late … Continue reading

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