Often when people tell me about their visit to the National Mall, it only comprises of a trip from the Lincoln Memorial to the Washington Monument. There are so many other lesser known monuments to enjoy. For this reason, I think it is extra important to bring up two newer places on the east end of the Mall that you may otherwise pass.
The American Veterans Disabled for Life Memorial was dedicated in 2014, and it is located on the south side of the U.S. Botanic Gardens. Surrounded by streets, this Memorial is not peaceful, but it is really unique compared to the other memorials on the Mall.
On a Sunday afternoon, the memorial had no visitors. While it does not have the serenity of being tucked into the Mall, it is one of the most moving memorials I have seen. The pictures and quotes etched into the wall range in emotion, and it is so grounding to read them. To get to this Memorial, I took the red line to Judiciary Square. It’s about a 15 minute walk from there.
Once you make a stop at this Memorial, you can easily head north to visit the Belmont-Paul Women’s Equality Monument and house. The main entrance to the house is on the back of the building, but you will see the beautiful front view if you approach from the Disabled Veterans Memorial. The Belmont-Paul House was one of the most prestigious houses when it was purchased by the National Woman’s Party.
This house just re-opened in October of 2016, and it has seven or eight rooms to tour. The collection ranges from things found in the house originally, to research done by the early members of the party, to art collections, to furnishings. I found some satirical art particularly enjoyable in one of the rooms on the second floor. While we were perfectly content with our own self-guided walk, ranger tours are offered about every 2 hours.
As Cacia and I toured the two floors, we found that the marketing staff had turned many of the mirrors into selfie opportunities with inspirational quotes. I hope the selfies and hashtags help more people find this awesome site, and we were sure to do our due diligence and help them out.
The east end of the Mall also happens to be near the United State Capitol building. While the Capitol is not a National Park, I just have to recommend that you take the free tour! I took the tour a few weeks ago, and it is such an impressive building. The tour guides are great, and you wear headphones so you can wander around while listening to your guide. The online reservation system is easy, and this is a tour that is not to be missed.
That is all for this week! Feel free to post in the comments any questions or ideas, and stay tuned for my blog next week. My next blog post will be the Virginia side of Great Falls, but I am actually exploring Utah for the next week. I do not know exactly what my Utah adventures will hold yet, but I am very excited! If you haven’t subscribed yet, make sure to click the follow button or enter your email address.