Thomas Jefferson Memorial

9 Oct
Thomas Jefferson Memorial

Thomas Jefferson Memorial

Yes, I KNOW it is in Washington D.C. and not Virginia; however, this is my blog and I make the rules so I’m going to write about it.  We are just too darn close to our Nation’s incredible Capital to not include it here!

While not the most popular memorial in D.C., the Jefferson Memorial is definitely a must see.  This tribute to our 3rd President is modeled after the Pantheon of Rome and the circular style was introduced in this country by Jefferson himself.  Visiting the Memorial is free of charge.

The statue of Jefferson inside the memorial looks out toward the White House.  Adorning the interior walls are 5 quotations taken from Jefferson’s writings that illustrate the principles to which he dedicated his life.  The site is surrounded by cherry blossom trees which were a gift from Tokyo in 1912.

The Jefferson Memorial is not the easiest to get to on foot.  We actually “swung by” during a recent trip.  You can park nearby and walk if you arrive early.  Limited free day long parking is available along Ohio Drive SW which is along the Potomac River south of the Lincoln Memorial or in Lots A, B & C south and west of the Jefferson Memorial.  Bring a stroller if you can!  Like the Lincoln Memorial, there are a lot of steps to climb; however, my son had fun counting all of them.  The statue of Jefferson is 19 ft tall and mesmerizing.

Inside the monument, take the elevator down and you will find a museum and not one, but 2 gift shops (they call one a bookstore) along with restrooms.  The Memorial is part of the Junior Ranger Program with the National Parks Service.

If you have time and if it’s a nice day, you may want to rent a pedal boat and pedal around the basin in front of the Memorial.  It’s a great opportunity to appreciate the Memorial from another vantage point and also open up conversation with your child about our 3rd President.

There are wonderful children’s books about Thomas Jefferson which can be picked up at the library to make the visit more enjoyable.  A couple of my favs are below in my picture gallery.


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