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Spots, Sights and Sounds

Jefferson Memorial difficult to reach, underwhelming

Jefferson Memorial difficult to reach, underwhelming

by Christian Michael

February 18, 2019

I'm a fan of Thomas Jefferson, in general, but reaching the microscopic peninsula (or possibly island) upon which his memorial is poised was a bit difficult, there's no parking nearby and the only way to access the actual memorial is walking a goodly distance, even then. "Difficult to reach, just like Jefferson," popped into my head on my way there, though I'm not sure how accurate the sentiment might be. 

I suppose I'm simply not much a fan of figure-centric memorials. While I agree that Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln and many others had profound impacts on the inception and evolution of our nation, I always find the larger-than-life statues and displays underwhelming. Men, however intelligent or charismatic, die as easily as the rest of us. Their words and ideas, however, I would say far outweigh the person offering them. But I digress.

The memorial is a simple rotunda capped by a heavy dome above a tall bronze statue. It boasts a tiny gift shop and a rather beautiful view of the river and the Washington Monument rising from the opposite shore. I warn travelers in the winter to dress warmly, especially as getting there is no quick feat, and the water makes it colder than other areas of the city.




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