Are you familiar with the history and oddities that have come from our nation’s capital? Take a look in this list of weird facts about Washington DC.
Washington DC became the capital of the United States in July of 1790 with the passage of the Residence Act. Since then, it has become a noteworthy city and a major cultural center, housing several monuments, museums, and government buildings.
This fascinating city is also home to 600,000 people, making it the 20th-largest city in the US. To put that in perspective, more people live in Washington DC than in Boston.
Those are just a few facts about our nation’s capital. There are a lot of facts about Washington DC that would shock most people. We’ll talk about some of them in the paragraphs below.
1. Don’t Buy American
Ironically enough, some of the most American parts of our culture were not made by natural-born Americans. The designer of the White House was named James Hoban. He was an Irish immigrant.
The Capitol building, meanwhile, was designed by William Thornton. Thornton was born in a part of the West Indies that were, at the time, a British colony. The West Indies were not granted independence until 1962.
This is quite beautiful if you think about it. America has always prided itself on being a nation of immigrants, where anyone from any background can step off the boat and make a name for themselves. This bit of history goes a long way towards proving that.
You can learn many more facts about Washington DC and the many attractions within it by taking DC walking tours.
2. The Great Failure
Comedians the world over have commented on how ridiculous the Washington Monument looks, and wondered what it has to do with Washington? Technically, it doesn’t.
The monument was originally supposed to be much, much bigger. The stone obelisk we have today was meant to be one of thirty. Additionally, there were going to be statues of the 2nd Continental Congress, which signed the Declaration of Independence, as well as a few figures from the Revolutionary War.
Unfortunately, the project proved far too ambitious. The budget was exhausted early, leaving us with only a single obelisk.
3. Luke…I am Your HolyFather
Did you know that we have a National Cathedral? Our beautiful gothic cathedral is known for its gargoyles, and the sense of humor exhibited by its architects.
One of the strange pieces adorning the Cathedral is Darth Vader. During the 1980s, the Cathedral ran a contest to design a gargoyle for it. The winner entered a design based on Darth Vader.
Other strange statues on the cathedral include gargoyles meant to mimic corrupt politicians, a surveillance robot, and a man in a gas mask. These statues were meant to reflect the concerns and fears of Americans at the time.
Fascinating Facts About Washington DC
Washington DC is an incredible city, boasting a strange history and culture. We’ve mentioned a few of our favorite facts about Washington DC in the paragraphs above, but there are many others we didn’t have room for.
We encourage you to do more research on your own if you’re interested.
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