Atlas Obscura is organizing trips! Join us on an adventure »
  • member
    since
  • places
    I've been
  • places
    I want to go
  • places added
    to the atlas
  • places
    edited
Leaderboard Highlights
penelopewaite's activity rankings
1st
Places visited in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
1st
Places visited in Melbourne, Australia
1st
Places visited in Sydney, Australia
Loading map...
Former Riggs Bank in Georgetown.
Washington, D.C.

Riggs Bank: 'The Bank of Presidents'

The bank that helped fund the Mexican-American War and the purchase of Alaska met its downfall after helping Augusto Pinochet launder money.
38.8991, -77.0340
Yenching Palace in Cleveland Park, Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C.

Yenching Palace

The iconic D.C. restaurant where the Cuban Missile Crisis was negotiated, now a Walgreens.
38.9366, -77.0593
Senate side.
Washington, D.C.

Capitol Bollards

The 5.5-mile ring of steel posts around the Capitol Building is one of the largest (and most uniform) of its kind in the world.
38.8898, -77.0060
Washington, D.C.

Fireworks Safety Zone on the National Mall

On the Fourth of July this area will transform into a Pompeii-like storm of falling embers and ash.
38.8889, -77.0440
Washington, D.C.

Washington Stock Exchange Building

D.C. once had its own tiny rival to the New York Stock Exchange.
38.8986, -77.0336
Hillman House
Washington, D.C.

George Washington's Townhouse Lots

After his presidency, George Washington planned to live only a few blocks from the Capitol building.
38.8929, -77.0099
Clara Barton's Missing Soldiers Office.
Washington, D.C.

Clara Barton Missing Soldiers Office Museum

Before founding the American Red Cross, Clara Barton had a tremendous humanitarian impact by locating thousands of missing soldiers.
38.8958, -77.0218
Washington, D.C.

Arizona Avenue Trestle

The span is crooked and made from two older recycled bridges.
38.9245, -77.1072
The current view
Washington, D.C.

Georgetown Waterfront

The little-known, 300-year history of the area includes former lives as a bustling tobacco port, parking lot, and industrial dump.
38.9029, -77.0657
Washington, D.C.

U.S. Naval Observatory Library

A horde of sky catalogs, astrophysical journals, even the works of Galileo and Copernicus.
38.9215, -77.0670
Washington, D.C.

The Sun Building

This nine-story building is the oldest standing skyscraper in D.C.
38.8976, -77.0304
Washington, D.C.

Inaugural Parade Center Line

A line of blue paint marks the route of the inaugural parade.
38.8988, -77.0339
Washington, D.C.

Southwest Duck Pond

This lovely pocket park is one of the most under appreciated in D.C.
38.8787, -77.0197
The statue of the Virgin Mary.
Washington, D.C.

Mary's Garden

An overlooked oasis of quiet on the grounds of Washington's monumental basilica.
38.9317, -77.0012
Close up of the FDR memorial near the National Archives in Washington, DC.
Washington, D.C.

First FDR Memorial

One of the most influential presidents in U.S. history wanted only this plain, elegant monument as his lasting memorial.
38.8936, -77.0237
Washington, D.C.

Churchill and Mandela Call and Response

When it comes to handsignals (and colonialism) rock always beats scissors.
38.9202, -77.0617
The market from above
Washington, D.C.

Maine Avenue Fish Market

The oldest continuously operating fish market in the United States.
38.8810, -77.0283
Approaching the Minecraft Death Star from the south
Washington, D.C.

Rayburn House Office Building

One critic described it as "middle Mussolini, early Ramses, and late Neiman-Marcus." Another called it an architectural "natural disaster."
38.8869, -77.0105
The Chemical Treatment Tower
Washington, D.C.

Washington Aqueduct Chemical Tower

Every drop of D.C. tap water flows through this old waterworks.
38.9376, -77.1131
American University surrounded by Army tents
Washington, D.C.

American University Experiment Station

The school tested mustard gas for the U.S. Army during World War I.
38.9350, -77.0938
View of the Watergate Exxon in 2016
Washington, D.C.

Watergate Gas Station

This seemingly out-of-place gas station by the Watergate hotel was once described as the most expensive gas station in the world.
38.9004, -77.0567
Monument to French Ambassador to the United States Jean Jules Jusserand in Rock Creek Park, Washington D.C.
Washington, D.C.

Jean Jules Jusserand Memorial

An obscure federal monument honors the French diplomat who served as Ambassador to the U.S. during WWI.
38.9382, -77.0515
Uncle Beazley
Washington, D.C.

Uncle Beazley the Triceratops

A celebrity from the late Cretaceous period.
38.9319, -77.0524
View of the Potomac Park Levee
Washington, D.C.

Potomac Park Flood Levee

This mysterious structure by the Washington Monument is a flood barrier designed to protect the White House against rising waters.
38.8914, -77.0395