Washington Monument Facts

The Washington Monument is one of D.C.’s quintessential landmarks and there are plenty of Washington Monument facts. The obelisk is a trademark of our nation’s capitol. It is maintained by the National Park Service sees a plethora of visitors each and every day.  While many facts are commonly know about the monument, here are some facts that you may not have been aware of.

  1. The building on the Washington Monument took over three decades and was interupted by the Civil War.The monument’s cornerstone was laid on July 4, 1848. It was finally finished on December 6, 1884.
  2. The Washington Monument was one of Washington D.C.’s earliest tourist attractions. Even today it remains a top visitation spot for tourists, both domestic and international, attracting over 800,000 visitors annually.
  3. The Washington Monument was built to honor George Washington. Its namesake was, of course, our nation’s first president and leader of the Continental Army during the American War of Independence.
  4. The Washington Monument is shaped like an Egyptian obelisk. It is an example of the neo-classical style that was popular during the 19th century.
  5. At its peak, the Washington Monument is 555’ 5 1/8” tall. From the top of the monument, a visitor can see a distance of over 30 miles.
  6. Admission to the Washington Monument is free. Despite this however, all patrons must have one of the free tickets that are given out in order to visit the monument.
  7. When the monument was finished it was the world’s tallest masonry project. To this day it remains an important example of masonry.
  8. During the Washington Monument’s construction there were multiple issues with funding. Initially there a Washington National Monument Society, however, it ran out of funds, leaving the monument unfinished.  Eventually however, presidential authorization was granted by President Grant for the federal government to take over the completion of the monument, and, in the last two years of its construction, it was built by the Army Corps. of Engineers.
  9. All the original funds to build the monument came from private sources. Later on however government funds were used to complete the project.
  10. The last major renovation occurred in 1934. The momument had suffered lightning dammage.
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