Visit the memorial dedicated to a Founding Father and author of the Declaration of Independence when you stop at the Thomas Jefferson Memorial.
As part of the National Park Service, the memorial is open 24 hours a day, but Park Rangers are only on site from 9:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. each day, and the site is often included in most tours of DC.
In June 1934, Congress welcomed the Thomas Jefferson Memorial Commission with construction beginning in 1938. Construction was interrupted by the Cherry Tree Rebellion where a group of women chained themselves to a cherry tree at the construction site and brought a petition to stop the uprooting of the cherry trees at the memorial’s location.
The memorial was dedicated by President Franklin D. Roosevelt and on the 200th anniversary of Jefferson’s birth on April 13, 1943. Though, the bronze statue wasn’t added until 1947!
The memorial’s chamber spans 165 ft. in diameter and the statue of Jefferson measures 19 ft. tall. Inside the chamber, you’ll find four quotes from Jefferson carved into the walls – one from the Declaration of Independence, one from a letter to Samuel Kercheval in 1816 discussing the evolution of law, one is a combination of quotes from his “1786 Notes of Virginia” and “Summary Views” to highlight the need of education and ending slavery, and finally a quote about freedom of religion from the “Act of Religious Freedom.” Many visitors enjoy an important aspect of the memorial, its direct positioning from the White House. Be sure to pay a visit to the Jefferson Memorial during your stay in DC.
701 East Basin Drive SW, Washington, DC