WASHINGTON MONUMENT, WASHINGTON, D.C. This monument is easily one of the most instantly recognizable landmarks in the world. It stands as a tribute to one of America’s greatest presidents. The idea to recognize Washington emerged in the 1780s. The 1791 plan for the new federal city made the monument the center of the action. The obelisk plan was approved in 1836. In 1848 the cornerstone to be laid. Along came the Civil War, further delaying completion. To speed things along, the Army Corps of Engineers took over and completed the project in 1884. The monument was officially dedicated on February 21, 1885.
Shot handheld with a Nikon D300, Nikkor AF-S 10-24mm lens at 15mm, f13, 1/1250 sec., ISO 640. Photograph by John Ecker |
WASHINGTON MONUMENT, WASHINGTON, D.C. The Washington Monument Society selected Robert Mills’ design of this obelisk in 1836. I would take several decades before the monument was finally dedicated on dedicated on February 21, 1885. The monument weights over 80,000 tons. It stands just over 555 feet tall. Walls at the base are 15 feet thick. At the top, they narrow to just 18 inches. The Society ran out of money in 1854 when the monument was just 150 feet tall. Construction stalled for about 25 years. A different quarry supplied the stone. While the two types seemed to match at the time, wind, rain, and erosion have caused the marble sections to weather differently, producing the now pronounced difference in colour. It’s 896 steps to the top of the obelisk. Visitors take an elevator to the observation deck where they can survey the city from the monument’s great height.
Shot handheld with a Nikon D300, Nikkor AF-S 10-24mm lens at 15mm, f13, 1/1250 sec., ISO 640. Image by John Ecker | pantheon photography
GIANT AMERICAN FLAG, KENNEDY LIBRARY, BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS: My two earlier posts about the Kennedy Presidential Library have generated a fair bit of interest, so I’m posting another shot featuring the massive flag that hangs in the pavilion. Library staff tell me that the flag was designed by I.M. Pei specifically for the pavilion space. President Kennedy requested that his Library not contain a bust or portrait. Mrs. Kennedy honoured his wishes. The flag represents President Kennedy in place of a likeness of him. The flag is massive. The dimensions are 26 ft. by 45 ft. Here’s my shot of the JFK Library Exterior and here’s another photo of the JFK Pavilion Flag.
EXTERIOR: JOHN F. KENNEDY LIBRARY, BOSTON MASSACHUSETTS: I love this building by I.M. Pei. See my shot of the gigantic American Flag this other photo of the Kennedy Library. The building sits on a 9.5 acre parcel of land on Columbia Point, facing across Dorchester Bay. To the east is Boston Harbour and then the open sea. The Library was built on a landfill site. To prepare the site for construction, it was raised 15 feet and beach grasses were planted in tribute to Kennedy’s love of the sea. The building itself is a triangular 10-storey tower. There is a two storey base that houses the library’s excellent exhibition space. In 1991 a 21,000 square foot waterfront addition was constructed to host more of the library’s educational and cultural programs.
Shot handheld with a Nikon D300, Nikkor AF-S 16-85 lens at 26mm, 1/1250 sec., f18, ISO 1600.
Photo by John Ecker | Pantheon
JOHN F. KENNEDY LIBRARY, BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS: Plans for the library began even before Kennedy’s untimely death. The tradition of privately paid-for presidential libraries began with the Roosevelt library. In 1961, the Kennedy administration approached Harvard University, seeking space next to its library for an eventual Kennedy library. Not long after his death, the family stated its preference that the library be the only large monument to the President. Money was raised, plans were developed and…. stagnation. After years of challenges dealing with the site— including Cambridge residents concerned about the influx of tourists, the Harvard site was abandoned in 1975. Columbia Point, on the grounds of the University of Massachusetts was then selected. Jackie Kennedy personally chose architect I.M. Pei to build the magnificent structure. What an inspired choice. The Kennedy Library opened in October 1979, more than 15 years after Kennedy’s assassination. Photo Shot handheld with a Nikon D300, Nikkor 16-85 AF-S, at 30mm, f10, 1/400 sec, 1600 ISO,
Photo by John Ecker | Pantheon Photography
EVOLUTIONARY RAINBOW, SAN FRANCISCO: This mural is on a wall at the corner of Haight and Cole, in San Francisco. Originally painted around 1967, it was completed by Joanna (Yana) Zegri. I understand that the original was removed when the building was in dire need of repair. It was subsequently restored in 1981, 1983 and 1997. The mural is intended to depict evolution. I sat across the street in the shadows for about an hour, watching people pass by. Most passed it like it was not even there. Others paused to take it all in. This photo is a composite of one person walking by hurriedly, oblivious to me and the mural. Shot handheld with a Nikon D300, 16-85mm lens at 50mm, 1/1000 sec, f11, ISO 640 Photo illustration by John Ecker | Pantheon