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FAQ

Facts and Questions about the Monumental Bicentennial Event,
the Washington Monument, and Mount Vernon Place!

Monumental Bicentennial Festivities

Is the event free?
Yes, everything is free and all are welcome!
Can the public attend the Naturalization Ceremony and Ribbon Cutting Ceremony?
Absolutely! But please be advised that priority seating will only be available for the newly naturalized citizens and their families, as well as our VIP guests, including government officials and supporters of this project.
Is this event appropriate for children?
Everyone is welcome, but younger children would probably enjoy the old-fashioned country fair the most that will be held in the surrounding Mount Vernon Place park squares. Many of the neighborhood cultural institutions and business will also be hosting thematic programming as well during the fair. List specific types of children’s activities when available.
What types of activities will be available at the old-fashioned country fair?
Details are coming soon.
Who paid for the monument to be built?
A lottery was held to fund the construction costs for the monument, which was commonly done during this time period to support public improvements.
What type of food concessions will be available?
Yes, there will be live music at the ribbon cutting ceremony as well as the old-fashioned country fair immediately following the re-dedication program. There will be blues/ragtime music as well as period music.
Will there be live music?
Yes! For a full listing of performances, look at the full Schedule.
Where can I park?
See “Parking” under the “Directions” tab.
What about public transportation?
See “Public transit” under the “Directions” tab.
Will any of the artifacts found in the 1815 cornerstone or 1915 time capsule discovered during the Washington Monument restoration be on display?
Yes, we plan to have several artifacts from both time capsules on display at the Maryland Historical Society from July 4th going forward.

Washington Monument Facts

Which monument came first, Baltimore or DC?
The Baltimore Washington monument is the first major American monument to honor George Washington and the democratic ideals he represented.
Who designed the Washington Monument?
Robert Mills designed the monument and its ornamental fence. He later designed the better-known Washington Monument in Washington, DC.
Why was the monument built in Mount Vernon?
Initially, the Washington Monument was to be located in the then more populated downtown area (today’s Battle Monument Square). A competition was held and Robert Mills’s design for the monument was selected. However, as the nearby residents feared that Mills’s tall column might topple onto their homes, a new location was needed. Because of this concern, John Eager Howard donated land, on the Southern end of his estate known as Belvidere, for the monument to be built on. At that time, Mount Vernon did not exist and the area was simply known as Howard’s Woods.
When was the cornerstone of the monument laid?
The cornerstone was laid on July 4, 1815 shortly after the War of 1812 when the British were defeated in Baltimore’s harbor. Before the cornerstone was laid, Mills’s original design was significantly simplified.
Who paid for the monument to be built?
A lottery was held to fund the construction costs for the monument, which was commonly done during this time period to support public improvements.
Who carved the statue of George Washintgon that is on top of the monument?
The 16’2” statute of George Washington, carved by Italian sculptor Enrico Causici, depicts him submitting his resignation as Commander-in-Chief of the Continental Army in the Annapolis State House in 1783, an act symbolic of his belief in the new American form of democratic government and the world’s most famous peaceful transfer of power. The statute of George Washington is oriented so that it is generally facing south towards Annapolis.
How tall is the monument?
The statue was raised to the top in 1829, the monument’s height was brought to just under 180 feet, with 227 steps spiraling upward.