Washington, DC, became the capital of the United States in 1800. Parts of Virginia and Maryland were combined to make the new capital. Charles L’Enfant created the architectural plan for the city. The federal government is the largest employer, and printing is the biggest industry. Over seventeen million tourists visit the nation’s capital every year. Children could locate some of the many important buildings on a map of Washington, DC.
Jefferson Memorial was dedicated in 1943 in Washington, DC. This date was picked in honor of Jefferson’s birthday. Construction was started in 1938 and was finished in 1943. A bronze statue of Thomas Jefferson was planned, but World War II intervened and bronze was needed for the war. A plaster statue painted to look like bronze was on display until 1947 when a real bronze statue took its rightful place. Children can visit a website at: http://www.nps.gov/thje/.
Abraham Lincoln was shot in 1865. He was at Ford’s Theatre in Washington, DC, to see a performance of “Our American Cousin.” He died the next day. Children could learn more at: Lincoln. They could also read Chasing Lincoln’s Killer by James L. Swanson. Children could decide how the future of America would have been different if Lincoln had not been assassinated.
United States capital was established temporarily in New York in 1788 by the Constitutional Convention. The city remained the capital until August 12, 1790. The capital moved back to Philadelphia before it finally moved to Washington, DC. Children look at the list of the nine locations of the United States capital at: US Capital.
Capitol Building cornerstone in Washington, DC, was laid by President Washington in 1793. The exact location of that cornerstone is now lost. Some experts believe it lies below National Statuary Hall. Children can learn many facts about the Capitol by visiting: Capitol Building.
National Museum of the American Indian opened on the National Mall, Washington, DC, in 2004. Children can visit its website at: http://www.nmai.si.edu/.
National Museum of African American History and Culture opened in 2016. Located on the National Mall in Washington, DC, the building houses about 33,000 artifacts. The Smithsonian Institute began construction of the building in 2003. Children can learn more at: https://nmaahc.si.edu/.
Million Man March occurred in 1995. African-American men joined together in Washington, DC, for a “holy day of atonement and reconciliation.”
Vietnam Veterans War Memorial was dedicated in Washington, DC, in 1982. Designed by Maya Lin, the wall (listing 58,195 names) attracts about three million visitors a year. Children can learn more at: http://www.nps.gov/vive/index.htm.