Sunday, April 25, 2010
The National Postal Museum, totally unassuming Smithsonian location, holds an incredibly interesting and interactive set of exhibits. Everything from the history of mail delivery, to lost mail, to mail fraud, to a Stamp Gallery. There is also a totally interactive exhibit of how direct marketing really works.
These are some of the more creative mail boxes on display.
This was a miniture train set inside of the station. It was a good stop.
JB & the Starship Enterprise:
The Library of Congress in one AMAZING place. It houses over 145 million items and over 33 million cataloged books. It is the largest library in the world. And it is always growning, collecting more books and other items. Not just printed or other wise recorded artifacts are on display at the Library of Congress, but we found Houdini's actual cuffs:
It is awesome to see the preservation of print in thie digital world in which we live.
It was a very cold day when we visited these locations. The Capitol tour was quite informative. The building has so much history, so many have been through it's halls, to see it in person was a wonderful experience.
The National Museum of the American Indian is the 16th museum of the Smithsonian Institution and the first to showcase and preserve the life, heratige, history and arts and the Native Americans. This unique structure houses collections of artifacts from all around the Americas.
Inside the graceful expanse of the National Museum of the American Indian there are visually stunning works of art, expressions of visceral feeling on the history that the Native Americans have experienced as this land became the United States.
Sunday, April 18, 2010
We did not make it to see the National Zoo durring the day, but we were able to go for an evening of the Zoo Lights event. It was a great night! A few of the buildings and exhibits were open for us to visit along the trail of lights.
It was a real treat to see the Pandas, Mei Xiang and Tian Tian, being active this evening. Raven LOVES Pandas. There was a zoologist available to talk about the research they are doing with them and tell visitors about Panda daily life. Very Cool.
The Washington National Cathedral was first the idea of L'Enfant's in 1791 as a "great church for national purposes." It was not begun to be built until the early 1900's. It was not considered "completed" until 1990, 83 years of construction. 15 Presidents have had their funerals at the Cathedral, 5 have held their presidential inaugural prayer service, and there is a Darth Vader sculpture near the top of the west tower.
Saturday, April 17, 2010
We were able to watch the change of guards at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.
The statue is 32 feet tall with a 60-foot flag pole, on which a cloth flag flies 24 hours a day and is replaced regularly.
This was a very meaningful visit for Raven.
The view from the top was so cool! It was fun seeing all of the places we had been and planned to go.
Here is Raven taking the picture above:
I like this one of the Capitol:
This is the Smithsonian Castle, the original building that housed artifacts and research. It now has operational offices and a rotating exhibit in a small area, it is also the resting place of James Smithson, the benefactor of the Institution, in his crypt. A picture of this to come later from our visit to the Castle.
You can see the change in color of the marble stone used to build the Washington Monument. If you are interested in the details of why . . . see details.