FDR promoted this 1943 shrine to the founder of his Democratic Party, balancing that to the Republicans’ icon, Lincoln. Roosevelt liked it so much he had trees cleared so he could see it from the Oval Office. John Russell Pope designed an adaptation (sneered at by some as "Jefferson’s muffin") of the Roman Pantheon that the architect Jefferson so admired. It echoes the president’s designs for his home, Monticello, and for his rotunda at the University of Virginia. The Georgia marble walls surrounding Jefferson’s 19ft likeness are inscribed with his enduring words. Alas, the 92-word quote from the Declaration of Independence contains 11 spelling mistakes and other inaccuracies.
Jaded DC residents sometimes forget how incredibly picturesque their city is, even though it's so crowded with monuments and memorials that it looks like a Hollywood movie set (pre-Armageddon, of course). There are a million things to do in Washington, DC, but if you live here long enough, you get used to seeing Abraham Lincoln peering down at you from his giant marble chair, or the Capitol dome rising over the horizon. Best of all, many Washington, DC attractions are on the list of free things to do in DC, including, of course, the impressive collection of Smithsonian museums. So, this weekend, instead of sitting around lamenting the state of the Union, get out there and immerse yourself in the capital’s inspiring sights.