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Showing posts with label wildflowers. Show all posts
Showing posts with label wildflowers. Show all posts

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Yet Another Hidden Gem in Washington, DC-- National Capitol Columns

So the main reason we went to the Arboretum was so see the National Columns. Little did we know just what an experience we were in for!

The columns were initially placed on the East Portico of the US Capitol in 1828. They were quarried from sandstone near Aquia Creek in Virginia (like 5 minutes from my house!!!), but they were later removed to make way for addition to the east side of the Capitol in 1958, eventually finding their way to the National Arboretum.
The columns as seen through a fountain near the entrance to the Arboretum.

The stately dignity of the Corinthian columns rising above a miniature reflecting pool, set in a quiet meadow surrounded by wildflowers, reminds one of quiet, serene utopia, tucked away and hidden from the world. 

Although looking at the columns made me feel like I was looking at the remnants of a world gone by, the National Capitol Columns have only been in their current location for just over a decade.

A serene meadow of wildflowers surrounds the columns. 

Pathway ending at the columns.

When the columns were removed, so were several of the steps from the east side of the Capitol. These steps were later  recycled here along with the columns.
Quarry marks from Government Island are still visible on many of the old Capitol steps.
A reflecting pool fed by a small stream running down a channel in the steps. 

Across the meadow is a capital, or top portion, of one of the columns. Here you can see the detail that the stone carver incorporated into the design. Acanthus leaves are visible and the many layers of paint applied while the column was in place at the Capitol are evident on portions of the stone as well.
The Arboretum actually rises above DC providing a great view of the Nations Capitol.
This flag was at the entrance to the Arboretum.
Even after four years here, we still are able to find new places to see and things to do in Washington DC!!!!