A Tale of Two Marbles: The Colorful History of the Washington Monument
Frederick M Hueston StoneForensics.com
The Washington Monument in Washington, D.C. isn’t just a towering icon of American history; it’s also got a quirky feature that makes it stand out: it’s two-toned! This isn’t just a design choice; it’s a fascinating story all by itself, intertwined with America’s past.
Why Two Different Colors? It’s All About the Stones!
Starting Off with Maryland Marble: Way back in 1848 when they first started building the monument, the builders used marble from Cockeysville, Maryland. This marble gives the bottom part of the monument its lighter shade.
A Long Pause and a New Start: They had to stop building in 1854 because they ran out of money and then the Civil War happened. When they got back to it in 1879, they hit a snag – they couldn’t find the same marble as before.
Switching to Plan B: Since they couldn’t get more of the original marble, they found a similar one from a quarry in Texas, Maryland. But here’s the catch: this new marble was a bit darker and had a different texture.
Finishing Up with a Mix: So, the top part of the monument ended up being built with this different marble, which is why when you look at it on a sunny day, you can really see the two shades.
Why It’s Cool
The two tones of the Washington Monument are like a snapshot of American history. The change in stone colors tells a story of the Civil War and the challenges America faced during those times. It’s like the monument is wearing its history!
Keeping the Monument Looking Great
Recently, there’s been a lot of work to keep the Washington Monument in tip-top shape, making sure it’s safe and still looks like the historical treasure it is. It’s pretty cool how they’re taking care of this big piece of history, ensuring everyone can enjoy its unique story for years to come.
In a Nutshell
So, the next time you’re checking out the Washington Monument, remember that its two-toned look isn’t just a style choice – it’s a real slice of history! The different marbles from Cockeysville and Texas tell the tale of America’s past, making this monument not just a sight to behold but a story to discover.