CLCrow Photography Blog

Capturing Life At Its Best

Our Nation’s Capital

I was an army brat growing up so I have lived in a few different states and even a foreign country but I spent most of my life living in Maryland.  Being only about 45 minutes away, many of my school field trips to were to Washington DC.  I have always loved wandering around downtown DC. I am a history buff, was an American History major in college so Washington DC is the perfect place for me to go especially because I am such a huge admirer of President Abraham Lincoln.

You do not realize just how big the National Mall is until you walk from end to end.  The National Mall extends from the U.S. Capitol (with the idiots that occupying the building now) to the Lincoln Memorial.  In between the Capitol and Lincoln Memorial is the Reflecting Pool, The Jefferson Memorial, The Tidal Basin (which in late March, early April is surrounded by beautiful Cherry Blossoms), The White House, Washington Monument, World War II Memorial, the Vietnam War Veterans Wall, Korean War Veteran’s Memorial,  Constitution Gardens,  FDR Memorial, the Museum of American History, Museum of National History, National Gallery of Art, National Air and Space Museum, The Smithsonian Castle, African Art Museum, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, American Art Museum, American Indian Museum, and the National Archives.  The Smithsonian Institution makes up for 19 Museums (most of which are listed above), 9 research centers and the National Zoo which is in the Woodley Park. To make up for their horrible traffic that DC has, it has a wonderful Metro System.

I try to make it up to DC at least once a year just to wander around the city and take photographs.  This year I was lucky enough to go when there was still a significant amount of snow on the ground so I got some great photos, the downside of course was it was rather cold.  You can check out my photos at my website:clcrowphotography.com The photographs are in the gallery labeled Washington DC – Winter.  As I said before I am a huge admirer of Abraham Lincoln so a majority of the photographs are of the Lincoln Memorial.  It was a great trip but I walked the full length of the national mall twice in one day and half of it twice so I virtually walked the entire length three times so by the end of my trip, my legs were feeling it.  If you have never been before, I would definitely recommend going but try to stay for a few days because there are so many things to do.

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May 5, 2010 Posted by | Experiences, Walkway Into History | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Walkway to History

March 1, 201o Photo of the Day from CLCrow Photography:Walkway to History is on the south walkway separating the Lincoln Memorial from the World War II Memorial.  There are two walkways on both the north and south sides of the Reflecting Pool.

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March 1, 2010 Posted by | Walkway Into History | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Photo of the Day – February 28, 2010

Photo of the Day – February 28, 2010. This is the black and white version of a photo that I posted a couple days ago.

The Battle of Antietam (also known as Battle of Sharpsburg) on September 17, 1862 was a costly union victory, it was the bloodiest single day battle in American history, it was the first time that confederate forces invaded the north but it was a victory that enable President Lincoln to issue his Emancipation Proclamation in January.  The Emancipation Proclamation freed slaves in the territories not already under union control.

The second and last invasion of the north but Confederate Forces was the Battle of Gettsyburg on July 1-3, 1863 fought in and around the town of Gettysburg, PA. The battle of Gettysburg was the battle with the largest number of casualties in the American Civil War and is often described as the turning point of the war.

The Gettysburg Address is a speech by President Lincoln and is one of the most well known and greatest speeches in American History. President Lincoln delivered the speech at the dedication of the Cemetery  in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania on November 19, 1863, four and a half months after the union armies defeated those of the confederacy at the decisive Battle of Gettysburg.  It is carved on the south wall of the Lincoln Memorial.

Abraham Lincoln’s carefully crafted address, which was not the main speech of the day, came to be regarded as one of the greatest speeches in American history. In just a little over two minutes, Lincoln invoked the principles of human equality espoused by the Declaration of Independence and redefined the Civil War as a struggle not merely for the Union, but as “a new birth of freedom” that would bring true equality to all of its citizens, and that would also create a unified nation in which states’ rights were no longer dominant.

Beginning with the now-iconic phrase “Four score and seven years ago,” Lincoln referred to the events of the Civil War and described the ceremony at Gettysburg as an opportunity not only to consecrate the grounds of a cemetery, but also to dedicate the living to the struggle to ensure that “government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.” It is one of the most quote speeches in U.S. History.

The other speech engraved on the wall of the Lincoln Memorial is Lincoln’s Second Inaugural Address, his favorite speech, was given on March 4, 1865.

It was President Lincoln who created the Revenue Act of 1861 which resulted in the first U.S. Income Tax.  Ok, this is one thing to not like him for.

President Lincoln is also largely responsible for putting Thanksgiving on the last Thursday of November and making it a federal holiday.  Yet another thing to love him for.  Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday.

President Abraham Lincoln was shot by John Wilkes Booth while he and his wife Mary Todd Lincoln were watching Our American Cousin At Ford’s Theater on April 14, 1865.   Booth jumped from the presidential box onto the stage where it is believed that he broke his leg, he shouted “Sic Semper Tyrannus” (Thus Always to Tyrants in Latin). Lincoln was carried across the street to the home of William Petersen where he died at 7:22 the following morning, never having regained consciousness.

President Lincoln is buried at Oak Ridge Cemetery in Springfield, Illinois.  Due to multiple threats of theft, Lincoln’s coffin was permanently placed in a steel cage, and embedded in concrete, 10 feet deep under the floor of Memorial Hall.

If you would like to see more of my photos, please visit my website at:

February 28, 2010 Posted by | Photo of the Day, Walkway Into History | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Photo of the Day – February 27, 2010

The Washington Monument.  It is the most prominent structure in Washington and one of the city’s earliest attractions. The Monument is shaped like an Egyptian obelisk, stands 555’ 5 1/8” tall, and offers views in excess of thirty miles.  On the west end of the National Mall built to commemorate the First U.S. President – General George Washington.

The monument is made of marble, granite and sandstone.  It is the tallest structure in Washington, DC.

Designed by Robert Mills.  Actual construction began in 1848 but was not completed until 1884 due lack of funs and the U.S. Civil War.  The cornerstone was laid on July 4, 1848.  A different shading of marble is visible approximately 150′ up shows where construction was halted for a number of years.

If officially opened on October 19, 1888.

Fifty flags representing the 50 states encircle the base.

February 27, 2010 Posted by | Photo Tips, Walkway Into History | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Photo of the Day – February 26, 2010

The U.S. Flag consists of 13 equal horizontal red and white stripes representing the 13 original colonies and  blue rectangle with 50 stars representing the 50 U.S. States.

February 26, 2010 Posted by | Photo of the Day, Walkway Into History | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Photo of the Day – February 25, 2010

Abraham Lincoln (February 12, 1809-April 15, 1865).  16th President of the United States.  President during the U.S. Civil War.

Born to Thomas Lincoln and Nancy Hanks Lincoln in Hardin County, Kentucky.  Nancy died when Abraham was 9.  Thomas Lincoln remarried Sarah Bush Johnson who Lincoln was very close to.  Abraham Lincoln had only about a year of schooling but was a very avid reader.

Abraham Lincoln’s first love was Ann Rutledge but she died in 1835 of typhoid.  Abraham Lincoln married Mary Todd on November 4, 1842. Abraham and Mary had four children:

  • Robert Todd Lincoln – only child to live into adulthood, died 1926 at the age of 82.
  • Edward – died 1850 from Tuberculosis at the age of 3.
  • Willie – died in 1862 at the age of 11
  • Tad – died 1871 at the age of 18.

Abraham Lincoln became well known during the famed Lincoln Douglas Debates for the Illinois U. S. Senate seat between Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas.  Douglas won the seat.  Douglas and Lincoln ran against each other for the presidency.

Abraham Lincoln was not even on the ballot in the southern states but was elected 16th President of the United States on November 6, 1860.

February 25, 2010 Posted by | Photo of the Day, Walkway Into History | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Photo of the Day – February 24, 2010

The White House.  The official residence and workplace for the President of the United States. The White House was a major feature of Pierre Charles L’Enfant’s plans for the newly established federal city – Washington DC. It has been the official residence of every president since John Adams.

Just as the U.S. Capitol, the White House was designed by James Hoban in a design competition.  The cornerstone was laid on October 13, 1792.  Construction took place from 1792 to 1800.    Mainly built by slaves and freed African Americans.

The White House is made up of six stories: a 2 story basement, ground floor, 1st floor, 2nd floor and 3rd floor.    The White House complex is made up for the Executive Residence, East and West Wings and the Old Executive Office Building.

John Adams wrote to his wife Abigail, “I pray Heaven to bestow the best blessings on this House, and all that shall hereafter inhabit it.  May none but honest and wise men ever rule under this roof.”

February 24, 2010 Posted by | Photo of the Day, Walkway Into History | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Photo of the Day – February 23, 2010


The U.S. Capitol is at the East End of the National Mall in Washington, D.C.  It sits atop Capitol Hill.  The meeting place for U.S. Congress, the legislative branch of the federal government.

The word “Capitol” means city on a hill in latin so Capitol Hill is a little redundant. Which is seems fitting. Pierre Charles L’Enfant was giving the taks of creating the city plan for the new capital city. L’Enfant chose Jenkins Hill as the site for theCapitol building. Thomas Jefferson in reviewing L’Enfants plans insisted that the legislative building be called “Capitol” rather than Congress House.

Thomas Jefferson came up with the idea of a design competition for what the building would look like.  William Thornton submitted a drawing which garnered praise from George Washington for its “grandeur, simplicity and beauty” as well as from Thomas Jefferson.

The senate wing was completed in 1800 and the house wing in 1811.  Though the Capitol was not completed yet, it held its first session of congress on November 17, 1800.  On August 24, 1814, the Capitol was partially burned by the British.  Reconstruction began in 1815 and was completed in 1819.  Construction continued through to 1864 with the addition of the center rotunda and the first capitol dome.

February 23, 2010 Posted by | Photo of the Day, Walkway Into History | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Photo of the Day – February 22, 2010

The Lincoln Memorial is on the West End of the National Mall in Washington DC.  The Lincoln Monument Associated was created by U.S. Congress in March 1867.  However, the site was not chosen until 1902 in an area that was formally swampland.  John Hay, one of President Lincoln’s secretaries promoted the location stating that the monument should stand alone, distinguished, serene.

Congress set aside 2 million for the project but it took 3 million to complete.  The classic design conveys nobility and solemn dignity that many associate with Abraham Lincoln.

Memorial is constructed primarily of Colorado yule marble and Indiana Limestone. The memorial is 190′ long, 119′ wide and almost 100′ high.  The statue was carved from 28 blocks of Georgia white marble.  The statue stands at 19′ 9″ tall and 19′ feet wide.

Dedicated by Former President and Chief Justice William H. Taft and President Warren G. Harding.  President Lincoln’s only surviving son, Robert Todd Lincoln was also in attendance.  This was the first time in almost 21 years that Robert Lincoln appeared with a president.

There is a coincidence between Robert Todd Lincoln and presidential assassinations.  He was either present or nearby by when three of the four (he had long passed away when Kennedy was assassinated) occured:

  • Robert was invited by his parents to Ford’s Theater the night of his father’s assassination at the hands of John Wilkes Booth but declined and remained at the White House. He was at his father’s side when he died.
  • At President James Garfield’s request, Robert Lincoln was at the 6th street station when the President Garfield was shot by Charles Guiteau in 1881 and was an eyewitness to the event. Robert Lincoln was Secretary of War at the time.
  • And at President William McKinley’s request, he was at the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, NY when President McKinley was shot by Leon Czolgosz in 1901.

Robert Lincoln was aware of these coincidences and he is said to have refused later presidential invitations with the comment “No, I’m not going, and they’d better not ask me, because there is a certain fatality about presidential functions when I am present.”

Another odd coincidence Robert Lincoln was once saved  from possible injury or death by Edwin Booth, John Wilkes Booth’s brother, on a train platform in Jersey City, New Jersey.Months later, while serving as an officer on the staff of General Ulysses S. Grant, Robert Lincoln recalled the incident to his fellow officer, Colonel Adam Badeau, who happened to be a friend of Edwin Booth. Badeau sent a letter to Booth, complimenting the actor for his heroism. Before receiving the letter, Booth had been unaware that the man whose life he had saved on the train platform had been the President’s son. The incident was said to have been of some comfort to Edwin Booth following his brother’s assassination of the President.

The Lincoln Memorial is administered by the National Park Service and is open to the public 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

February 22, 2010 Posted by | Photo of the Day, Walkway Into History | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Photo of the Day – February 21, 2010

The U.S. Capitol. The meeting place for both the U.S. Senate and the House of Representatives.  It sits on top of Capitol Hill at the eastern end of the National Mall. Was designed by William Thornton.  A groundbreaking ceremony for the Capitol took place on September 18, 1793. George Washington, dressed in masonic attire, laid the cornerstone, which was made by silversmith Caleb Bentley.

February 21, 2010 Posted by | Photo of the Day, Walkway Into History | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment