G'day folks,

Ever been to the Washington Monument in Washington DC? I have been there many times, but if you look closely you’ll notice that the color changes a third of the way up the tower. 

Construction on the Washington Monument began in 1848 with funding coming entirely from private donations. But within six years the eponymous Washington Monument Society had burned through its budget, and work on the obelisk ground to a halt. The 152-foot tall marble stub was capped with a wooden roof, and the project sat dormant for years as a source of national embarrassment.

At the time, the federal government had more pressing business to attend to than memorial building—namely fighting the Civil War and then reconstructing the South. The project finally resumed 20 years later in 1878, and the Army Corps of Engineers took over construction of the monument. The only problem was that the original marble quarry, Thomas Symington’s in Baltimore, was no longer in operation.

The engineers did their best to find a match, signing a contract with a nearby quarry owned by Hugh Sission and completing the monument in 1884. The Army Corps of Engineers official history of the project notes that by 1900, high levels of interior condensation “began penetrating the joints of the outer walls, causing the [new] marble ashler to discolor.” The effect has grown more dramatic over the years, and today the two sections are quite apparent. While some see the color disconnect as an architectural flaw, others view the marble stripe as an ugly but interesting wrinkle in the Washington Monument’s


  Clancy's comment: Not many people walk around with big cameras these days, but those that do learn about these things fairly quickly because lenses are brilliant.

I'm ...


  1. Hello, Clancy. Is there anyone out there?
    Since Google have departed the scene I’m not seeing any other comments by anyone, and have no idea whether my comments are valid.
    If not - bit of a big waste of time, Clancy...little point of a secret BLOG...
    Comments - anyone...?!

  2. Cannot say that I ever noticed, but having had my attention drawn to it, it could have as easily been planned as been an accident. I have other reasons for disliking the monument, like what is the reflecting pool, Martha? Interestingly enough, when historic female figures were openly represented in the same manner, it caused quit an uproar. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Dinner_Party But apart from the Freudian interpretation of a monument to the "father" of our country, the difference in building material isn't that awful.