The Jefferson Memorial

Sitting on an island on the southern axis of the National Mall, the Jefferson Memorial is dedicated to one of the most famous and influential of the Founding Fathers.
Jefferson Memorial in Washington DC
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The Jefferson Memorial is currently undergoing renovations. Most of the memorial will remain open during the work, although the east side will be used for construction staging. The project is expected to be completed around May 2020.

Sitting on the southern axis of the National Mall, opposite the White House and Washington Monument, the Jefferson Memorial sits on the bank of Tidal Basin on reclaimed land on was once part of the Potomac.

A classical domed structure of the kind that Jefferson made famous in the United States after his stay in France, the structure anchored at its center by an oversized statue of Thomas Jefferson. It’s an open air memorial and, like the Lincoln Memorial, open 24 hours.

The Jefferson Memorial is at its photogenic best during late-March through early-April during the blooming of the cherry blossoms that ring the Tidal Pool.

The West Lawn of the Jefferson Memorial is one of only three locations in the National Mall and Memorial Parks system where wedding ceremonies are permitted (with a permit). The others are the nearby George Mason Memorial and the DC War Memorial/World War I Memorial.

And you might have noticed that the dome of the Jefferson Memorial is mostly dark and tarnished but there’s a wide strip that’s clean. That’s due to a test that the NPS was conducting of a laser treatment to remove the biofilm that creates that tarnished look (otherwise known as a colony of microscopic organisms that adheres to stone surfaces). The test was successful and will presumably lead to some as-yet-announced treatment program of the rest of the dome.

Photos of the Jefferson Memorial

Jefferson Memorial, Washington DC

Silhouette of the Statue of Thomas Jefferson at the Jefferson Memorial

Washington DC Cherry Blossoms 2017 - March 24

DC Cherry Blossom Watch Update: April 11, 2018

Jefferson Memorial from the Tidal Basin Water Level

Thomas Jefferson Statue in Jefferson Memorial Washington DC

Jefferson Memorial in the Mist

Rising Sun with the Jefferson Memorial in Washington DC

Jefferson Memorial Wide-angle with Statue and Ceiling

Jefferson Memorial in the Snow

Jefferson Memorial in Washington DC

Washington DC Cherry Blossoms

Jefferson Memorial in Golden Light Washington DC

Jefferson Memorial in Washington DC

Washignton DC Cherry Blossoms - February 28, 2017

Jefferson Memorial and Cherry Blossoms - April 12, 2015

Jefferson Memorial in Washington DC

Washington DC Cherry Blossoms - March 26, 2016

Washington DC Cherry Blossoms - March 7, 2017

Thomas Jefferson Statue in Jefferson Memorial Washington DC

Swan Paddle Boats with Jefferson Memorial

Cherry Blossoms - April 12, 2015

Clouds Just Before Sunrise at the Jefferson Memorial in Washington DC

Pink Skies Before Dawn at the Jefferson Memorial in Washington DC

Jefferson Memorial with blue sky

Jefferson Memorial in Washington DC

Pink Skies Before Dawn at the Jefferson Memorial in Washington DC

Jefferson Memorial in Washington DC

Jefferson Memorial in Washington DC

Jefferson Memorial in Under Threatening Skies in Washington DC

Jefferson Memorial April 11, 2015 Before Dawn

Sunrise at the Jefferson Memorial in Washington DC

Jefferson Memorial Wide-Angle with Tourists

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Getting Here

The best way to get to the Jefferson Memorial is by Metro. The closest stop is Smithsonian (0.8 miles) (Orange line). Metro has a handy Trip Planner and here’s a map of the Metro lines.

There is a small parking lot on the eastern side of the Tidal Pool near the Jefferson Memorial. (This parking lot is closed off during the National Cherry Blossom Festival.) There’s more parking on the opposite side of the Tidal Pool along the Potomac, extending all the way along Hains Point, including some convenient parking lots at the foot of the 14th Street Bridge.

Official Website

http://www.nps.gov/thje/index.htm

For Photographers

Tripods are allowed around the memorial grounds and around the Tidal Pool but not inside the memorial itself. There’s no problem using a flash. No reservations or tickets are required–you can wander around at will.

The Jefferson Memorial never closes and does not require tickets or reservations–you can just wander in and around the Memorial any time of the day or night.

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