Clara Barton National Historic Site

January 19, 2020

It was a time, at least on this side of the planet, when women could not vote, own property, or have a bank account.

The Clara Barton National Historic Site

Clara Barton, the founder of the American Red Cross, lived a life that transcended limitations. She built a career of humanitarian service in a society that did not grant her full rights because of her gender.

Glen Echo Park

Her house is just meters away from Glen Echo Park, the Washington DC Metro Area's premier amusement park from 1898 to 1968.

Chautauqua Tower

This is the only amusement park preserved by the US National Park system.

Pottery Classes at the Yurts

In the early 1890s, this was a National Chautauqua Assembly, an arts and education colony.

Bumper Car

In 1960, Howard University students and residents led Civil Rights protests that opened the Park to all races.

Washington Conservatory of Music

Today artists come to learn and create amidst reminders of a rich and inspiring past.

Cuddle Up Pavilion

National Harbor, Maryland

National Harbor is a place south of Washington and along the Potomac River. It was a plantation and rezoned in 1994 for mixed-use development.

Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center

You can stroll inside the Gaylord Hotel, the largest non-gaming hotel and convention center on the East Coast of the United States.

Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center

This place is a destination unto itself. It features a 19-story glass atrium with views of the Potomac River.

Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center

The waterfront is outside the Gaylord Convention Center, on the left of the waterfront trail there is a replica of Air Force One, this is a refurbished and refitted old cargo plane. I couldn't find the cost of this project, but I think it wasn't cheap because you need to pay $20 to get in.

Replica or Air Force One

If you can afford it, the Capital Wheel has 42 climate-controlled gondolas and soars 180 feet above the Potomac River to offer panoramic views.

The Capital Wheel and The Awakening

The Awakening is a 72-foot (22 m) statue of a giant embedded in the earth, struggling to free himself.

The Awakening by J. Seward Johnson, Jr (1980)

The statue consists of five separate aluminum pieces buried in the ground. The left hand and right foot barely protrude, while the bent left leg and knee jut into the air. The 17-foot (5.2 m) high right arm and hand reach farther out of the ground. The bearded face, with the mouth in mid-scream, struggles to emerge from the earth.

The Awakening

From there you can follow the American Way street to visit American Way Outdoor Park.

"Maryland's Bounty" Panel 2 by Cheryl Foster

You will see sculptures representing the five branches of the U.S. Military: the Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, and Coast Guard.

America's Team: Protecting Your Freedom by Ivan Schwartz (2018)

It unveiled on November 11, 2018, 100 years after the end of World War I.

Touring National Harbor Art

Moving along American Way, there are statues of historic icons George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Frederick Douglass, Henry Ford (along with an actual Model T automobile), Franklin D. Roosevelt, Winston Churchill, Dwight D. Eisenhower, Louis Armstrong, and Rosie the Riveter—all by world-renowned sculptor Ivan Schwartz.

National Harbor

There is a by-cell tour that explains the art and the history of the persons depicted on it.

George Washington

George Washington (1732-1799), The Father of the United States.

Abraham Lincoln, Frederick Douglas, and Juan

Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865), The Great Emancipator.

Frederick Douglas (1818-1895), Abolitionist, Orator, and Statesman.

Henry Ford

Henry Ford (1863-1947), Father of the Assembly Line.

Winston Churchull and Franklin Delano Roosevelt

Winston Churchill (1874-1964), British Prime Minister during WWII.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt (1882-1945), President & Architect of the New Deal ("FDR").

Rosie the Riveter

Rosie the Riveter, Cultural icon of women in World War II.

Holding Out

“Bag Lady” | Contemporary | by J. Seward Johnson.

Louis Armston

Louis Armstrong (1901-1971), Jazz Trumpeter & Composer.

Embracing Peace

“The Kiss” | 1945 | by J. Seward Johnson.

Forever Marilyn

Marilyn Monroe (1926-1962), Actress, model, and singer.

Old Town, Alexandria, Virginia

Old Town is a nationally designated historic distric lined with preserved 18th and 19th century architecture.

The Ramsay House, circa 1724, the oldest house in Alexandria

Founded in 1749, Alexandria was the commercial and political activity for early patriots such as George Washington.

King Street

Alexandria became the United States' third historic district in 1946.

Old Town Alexandria Harbor

Alexandria mainly exported raw goods like tobacco and wheat and imported manufactured goods from Europe and sugar from the Caribbean.

Old Town Alexandria Harbor

The forced labor and the trade of enslaved individuals formed the foundation of this trans-Atlantic network.

Old Town Alexandria

The 1920 Torpedo Factory became an Art Center in 1974.

Torpedo Factory Art Center

Torpedoes manufactured on Alexandria went to Piney Point, Maryland, where they were shot down from a torpedo test barge, to test distance and course.

The Mark XIV Torpedo

The Mark XIV green torpedo, produced here in 1945, is currently displayed in the main hall. It is painted bright green so that the Navy could find it in the water when tested at Piney Point.

The Fisherman and His Wife by Christine Cardellino

Today the factory is home to the largest collection of publicly accessible working artist studios in the United States.


It has 82 studios and seven galleries, you can meet resident artists and watch them work, and purchase original work for your collection.


Washington National Cathedral

In the United States, the Washington National Cathedral is second in size only to New York City’s Cathedral of St. John the Divine (still uncompleted).

Washington National Cathedral

Designed and constructed in the 14th-century English Gothic style, it is also built without the use of steel support in a centuries-old manner—using artists, sculptors, and stonemasons.

Side View

The weight of the roof passes downward along with the vaulting, and then on to the piers, where it is resisted by the flying buttresses.

Nave Vaulting - The Flags of all the States of the US

Because the walls do not support the weight of the roof, they can be thin and tall, permitting large windows decorated with stained glass.

The West Rose Window

The West Rose Window, known as the Creation Rose, brings the creation story with an abstract interpretation that cast light throughout the nave.

Stained Glass Depicting Events of the Life of Jesus

Church services and musical performances are the only way to experience the cathedral for free. Outside of spiritual visits, you must pay admission.

David Cutting Goliath's Head

Stonemasons and builders erected the cathedral beginning in 1907, completing it 83 years later in 1990.

Main (nave) Level

On the lower (crypt) level there is a display of nativity scenes from around the world.

Nativity Scene from New Mexico

With a scenic view of Washington from the seventh floor Pilgrim Observation Gallery, the top of the Church is the highest point in DC.

Scenic Views from the Seventh Floor

Numerous grotesques and gargoyles adorn the exterior, most of them designed by the carvers. There were also two competitions held for the public to provide designs, the second of these produced the famous Darth Vader grotesque which is high on the northwest tower.


In 2019, to raise money for earhquake repairs, the Cathedral started building a model of the Cathedral with LEGO bricks, around 500,000 bricks will create the world's largest Cathedral made of LEGO elements.

The Cathedral LEGO

You pay $2 for a brick and a volunteer will show you where to put the piece. If in 3 years they haven't completed the LEGO, I will help by donating a brick as I need to go back with binoculars to find the Darth Vader Grotesque.

George Washington Masonic National Memorial

Nearby is the George Washington Masonic Memorial, built in the 1920s as a memorial and a museum highlighting the contributions of Freemasons to the United States.

Chesapeake and Ohio Canal Historical Park - Great Falls

Washington Aqueduct Overlook

The C&O Canal Company created a water highway that connected the Potomac and Ohio Rivers.

Great Falls Tavern

Great Falls was a popular destination for city Washingtonians in the 1870s. The lockkeeper's house was enlarged twice to accommodate a hotel and tavern.


Navigating around the Great Falls was challenging.

Here, where the Potomac River plunges more than 41 vertical feet, the C&O Canal Company built six closely spaced locks to drop boats safely past the river.


The area around the tavern bustled with a community of over 100 people. Passenger boats left here taking tourists on a leisurely overnight trip to Harpers Ferry, 50 miles up the canal.

Potomac River - Crossing Olmsted Island Bridges

The Potomac River was wide, flat, and slow-moving about two million years ago. Then came the Ice Age. Sea level fell as much as 300 feet, forcing the Potomac to carve a deeper channel to reach the ocean.

Potomac River - Crossing Olmsted Island Bridges

Because of the difficulty in cutting through the bedrock, the Potomac created waterfalls and rapids. The most dramatic drop occurs here in Great Falls.

Great Falls Overlook

The Potomac River drops some 60 feet at Great Falls. In a series of rapids, it falls an additional 85 feet to tidewater at Washington, D.C., ten miles downstream.

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