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Washington Monument: 1860

"Washington Monument as it stood for 25 years," 1860. Glass-plate (wet collodion) photograph by Mathew Brady. View full size.

"Washington Monument as it stood for 25 years," 1860. Glass-plate (wet collodion) photograph by Mathew Brady. View full size.


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Some links on the Washington Monument

I used to work as a researcher in the 1980s on some of the "DC Underground," and most of my research books I used are long out of print. But casually looking about the Internet, I found:
Wikipedia has a good solid reference, including some background with donation of the stones, which is riddled with weirdness.
Snopes not only has some debunked myths, but also some interesting stuff buried there.
The theft of the "Pope's Stone" is one of particular interest, along with the following anti-Catholic coup.

I also recall there was a stone donated from Napoleon's tomb which was stolen in the New Jersey shipyard it arrived at.

I used to think DC was dull and boring until I looked under the rug.


Are there books on the subject? I'd love to read more about it.


I'd like to read the history-have any recommendations for books or what have you?

The history behind this is pretty funny

The history behind the building of the Washington Monument is pretty bizarre.

First, George did NOT want any monument erected for him, which is why he chose to be buried on his home estate. He considered monuments to be objects of conceit and arrogance. But after he died, the years went by, and in 1833, which marked the 100th anniversary of Washington's birth, a large group of concerned citizens formed the Washington National Monument Society. This started a process that would end with the monument we all know and love in 1888.

But the intrigue, scandal, and money problems that led to the 25-year gap in this picture, and the "color band" we see to this day because of it is a story well worth reading.

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