Who in their right mind would sign on for an underwater walking tour? Yet had you ventured along the acreage covered on this walk during the Civil War years, you would have found yourself submerged beneath the Potomac River. How nineteenth-century silt was dredged and 20th century parkland emerged is one of the revelations of this excursion in which water plays a starring role– gliding along as a river, carrying barges through a former canal, flowing from fountains and, as a finale, reflecting one of the capital’s most breath-taking vistas. Interspersed amongst these elements are a series of major monuments to America’s wars in Europe and Asia, evoking the triumph and anguish of warfare. The prelude to this journey is a peaceful one, though, starting at a picturesque island where a little-known memorial commemorates a crucial moment in America’s birth: the signing of the Declaration of Independence.
National Mall Memorials: Along the Reflecting Pool visits Constitution Gardens, the National World War II Memorial, Vietnam Veterans Memorial, Korean War Veterans Memorial, and Abraham Lincoln Memorial.