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Washington - District Of Columbia, USA
A rather hot holiday weekend in Washington DC spent trapsing around all the tourist sights of the City...
The chaps in Washington must have spent too much time building fancy buildings because when it came to naming streets it seems they ran out of inspiration. In the grid of streets one direction has street names going by numbers (1st Street, 2nd Street, etc) and the other direction uses letters (A Street, B Street, etc). How boring.
Washington is certainly a place full of grand buildings. Check out some of the interiors and exteriors below.
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Washington DC May 2005
Here are some general pics of things like the J. Edgar Hoover Building (where the
FBI hang out) and also look out for a strange little house I found at 1610 S Street.
You'll also see a picture of the Theatre Box which Abraham Lincoln was sat in when John Wilkes Booth assasinated him. This is at
Ford's Theatre (sic) which is just off Pennsylvania Avenue.
Arlington Cemetery is home to the Tomb Of The Unknown Soldier and also the John F. Kennedy grave site. There are numerous other monuments, of particular note are dedications to the astronauts of both Space Shuttle disasters. I thought it inappropriate to snap away at these sites.
Library Of Congress
Library Of Congress is the largest library in the world with some 530 miles of bookshelves. If this were in Edinburgh would we have turned it into a Super Pub or perhaps a Nightblub by now?
Museum Of Natural History
Washington's answer to the
Natural History Museum in London. Pretty stock-standard although they do have a collection called the 'Insect Zoo' which includes all sorts of poisonous beasties. It is also home to a massive Gem and Mineral collection.
Here are pictures from the
National Archives, home to the Declaration of Independence, the Bill Of Rights and the Constitution.
National Museum Of American History is quite interesting and although I couldn't find Dorothy's ruby slippers from The Wizard Of Oz, I did find Oscar (the Grouch) from Sesame Street! Also there is the microphone FDR used for all his 'fireside chats', and of course the original Star Spangled Banner. You might also spot that I found an Iron Lung.
The Smithsonian is home to a great many more Museums, one of which is the National Air and Space Museum - the most visited Museum in the World. Here there are lots of things which fly (rockets, planes, missiles and even monkeys!), none of which I was really very interested in taking photos of after 3 days of trudging around. Some items which spring to mind are the Apollo 11 capsule, the prototype Hubble Telescope (photo below), Sputnik, and The Spirit Of St Louis.
The White House
You'll see a car hastily drawing into the rear gates of
The White House. We were told by security staff that this (and the other 15 or so vehicles travelling along with it) was indeed the President coming back from an engagement at the Tomb Of The Unknown Soldier at Arlington Cemetery where he had lain a wreath for Memorial Day. The operation was slick and lasted moments.
Union Station is a bit like New York City's
Grand Central Station (it was built around the same time). Must cost a fortune to heat it; it's the size of an Aircraft Hangar!
US Capitol is the home of The Senate and the House Of Representatives. The instantly recognisable Dome contains a room called the Rotunda which is elaborately decorated and is coincidentally used for 'Lying In State' ceremonies (most recently Ronald Reagan). The Capitol looks down the National Mall to the Washington Monument.