History & Heritage

The country’s history starts with our own history and heritage.

The History of Washington, DC

Founded on July 16, 1790, Washington, DC is unique among American cities because it was established by the Constitution of the United States to serve as the nation’s capital. You can read the actual line at the National Archives. From its beginning, it has been embroiled in political maneuvering,...

Washington, DC Aerial View
Visiting the Smithsonian National Postal Museum in Washington, DC

Since its opening in 1993 in the historic City Post Office Building, the Smithsonian National Postal Museum has served to honor and celebrate America’s proud postal history. Located next to Union Station in DC’s NoMa neighborhood , the museum houses a vast collection of stamps, historic artifacts...

@abroadwife - Family at the Smithsonian National Postal Museum - Free museum in Washington, DC
Guide to Visiting Arlington National Cemetery

What is Arlington National Cemetery? The Arlington National Cemetery is the country’s largest military cemetery and serves as the final resting place for more than 400,000 military veterans and their immediate family from the fronts of Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as World Wars I and II, the...

@mattbridgesphotography - Changing of the Guard ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery - Historic sites near Washington, DC
8 Must-See Monuments & Memorials on the National Mall

According to the American Institute of Architects, half of Americans’ top 12 favorite architectural gems line the National Mall . There’s no denying the significance of the Mall for its symbols to American history and for its uniquely designed monuments. Check them all out here, then it's time to...

@travelmemories74 - Visitors at the World War II Memorial and Lincoln Memorial - National Mall in Washington, DC
Visiting the Jefferson Memorial in Washington, DC

Where and what is the Jefferson Memorial? The location and architecture of the Thomas Jefferson Memorial make it stand out among DC’s amazing array of monuments and memorials . Designed by John Russell Pope in 1925, the memorial resembles the Pantheon in Rome, an adaptation of Neoclassical...

@roy_howell4 - Nighttime at the Jefferson Memorial - Monuments and Memorials in Washington, DC
Visiting the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, DC

Experiencing the Lincoln Memorial The grand Lincoln Memorial towers over the Reflecting Pool, anchoring the western end of the National Mall . The best way to approach the memorial is from the east, by the Washington Monument and the National World War II Memorial . This will put you at the edge of...

@jbrockel11 - Lincoln Memorial on the National Mall at night - Memorials in Washington, DC
Free Things to Do: History & Heritage in Washington, DC

Washington, DC is full of free things to do, and many involve American history, heritage and culture. Below, you will find numerous free museums and attractions, including the city’s iconic monuments and memorials on the National Mall. After exploring these landmarks, there’s no doubt you will have...

Free historic sites and heritage experiences in Washington, DC - Morning at the Korean War Veterans Memorial on the National Mall
3 Days Exploring Civil War to Civil Rights in Washington, DC

Morning Begin your day with breakfast at the Willard InterContinental , where Abraham Lincoln stayed prior to his inauguration and where Martin Luther King, Jr. wrote his “I Have a Dream” speech. Freedom Plaza, located opposite the hotel, honor’s King’s legacy. After breakfast, walk down....

Where Martin Luther King, Jr. Delivered His "I Have a Dream" Speech on the Lincoln Memorial Steps - National Mall - Washington, DC
How Do I Tour the U.S. Capitol and See Congress in Session?

The U.S. Capitol Building is one of the most recognizable buildings in the world and the center of American democracy. The world-famous domed building is home to the United States House of Representatives and Senate; where America’s congressmen and congresswomen conduct business, debate laws and...

@delgadophotos - Your guide to touring the U.S. Capitol - How to see Congress in session
Visiting the American Veterans Disabled for Life Memorial in Washington, DC

A visit to the American Veterans Disabled for Life Memorial is a solemn and powerful reminder of the very human cost of war. The memorial “conveys a combination of strength and vulnerability, of loss and renewal… through juxtaposition of granite and glass,” according to the National Park Service,...

Guide to Visiting the American Veterans Disabled for Life Memorial in Washington, DC