15 Things You Didn't Know About Washington D.C

15 Things You Didn't Know About Washington D.C

Secret monuments and cool facts.

This past week I had the pleasure of jetting off to Washington D.C for the day with my boyfriend. D.C is one of my favorite cities I’ve ever been to, especially since I’m a Political Science major with a hope of one day running for office. Before leaving for the city, I did some digging around to find some cool places to visit and things to see. Here is a comprehensive list of a few things you may not have known about D.C.:

1. The Spy Museum

There is an entire museum dedicated to memorabilia, artifacts, and the mystery behind the life of spies in America and all over the world. There’s a lot about the history of D.C and the FBI, CIA, etc. in the museum for you to learn. Beware – some of it may freak you out. It’s graphic, and you may not realize how many people are not who you think they are.

2. The Martin Luther King Jr.'s Step - Lincoln Memorial

Exactly 18 steps from the top of the Lincoln Memorial landing, there is a step dedicated to Martin Luther King Jr’s “I Have A Dream Speech”. Check out the beautiful inscription next time you visit the monument.3. The Washington Monument Is Two Different Colors

About a third of the way up the beautiful obelisk, there is an unmistakable change of color in the stone. Story goes that funding ran dry early into the project and when it began again, they had to use different stone. Read part of the story here!


4. Technicolor Church

At 700 Delaware Ave there lies a previously white church, now in glittering technicolor as part of an art installation. I have no idea if the church itself is active, but if it is, I hope they sing rock music as part of their services.

5. DEA Museum

The Drug Enforcement Agency Museum renovated and updated recently is located right across the Potomac River. It covers everything from the history of heroine and jazz to Pablo Escobar and his Colombian cartels, and more.

6. The Exorcist Steps

You couldn't pay me enough to see this movie, but apparently the steps from the film where the creepy something comes down are in Georgetown. Have fun - I'll be getting some coffee.


7. Einstein Memorial

Located on the grounds of the National Academy of Sciences, nestled in a grove of trees, sits a huge bronze statue on a base of a map of the universe. It's right by the Vietnam Memorial, so check it out if you're in that part of town.

8. The National Mall AKA 2 Miles of AWESOME

If you've ever been to D.C, chances are you've been on the National Mall. The National Mall runs from the Capitol building to Lincoln's Memorial. It's actually two miles long featuring shops, museums, and other monuments along the way.

9. The White House Was Not Originally White

I have not personally been, but according to others, getting tickets to go inside is worth the hassle. Did you know that the famous white house was not actually white? It takes 570 gallons of white paint to cover the whole thing, but the gray-colored sandstone wasn't painted white until after the British lit it on fire. Found here!

10. Americans Didn't Design The Capitol Or The White House

The Capitol Building was actually designed by a British doctor, and the White House was designed by an irishman.

11. No Taxation Without Representation?

D.C residents could not vote in the presidential elections until the 23rd amendment was ratified in 1961. In fact, D.C was not actually designed to be a place for the population to live, it was meant to simply be a "seat" for the government.

12. Alligators, Anyone?

Herbert Hoover and John Quincy Adams both kept alligators at the White House.

13. Lots Of Politics = Lots Of Alcohol

D.C residents drink more wine per capita than any of the other 50 states!

14. Darth Vader & Religion

The National Cathedral has a Darth Vader grotesque outside, and inside a stained glass panel dedicated to astronomy.

15. There Is No "J"

D.C's streets are lettered, but there is no "J" street. When the founders were creating the city, the alphabet wasn't exactly finalized, and back then the letters "J" and "I" were interchangeable. Thomas Jefferson actually signed his initials "T.I".

Source: here.

Cover Image Credit: U.S Capitol

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It's Time To Thank Your First Roommate

Not the horror story kind of roommate, but the one that was truly awesome.

Nostalgic feelings have recently caused me to reflect back on my freshman year of college. No other year of my life has been filled with more ups and downs, and highs and lows, than freshman year. Throughout all of the madness, one factor remained constant: my roommate. It is time to thank her for everything. These are only a few of the many reasons to do so, and this goes for roommates everywhere.

You have been through all the college "firsts" together.

If you think about it, your roommate was there through all of your first college experiences. The first day of orientation, wishing you luck on the first days of classes, the first night out, etc. That is something that can never be changed. You will always look back and think, "I remember my first day of college with ____."

You were even each other's first real college friend.

You were even each other's first real college friend.

Months before move-in day, you were already planning out what freshman year would be like. Whether you previously knew each other, met on Facebook, or arranged to meet in person before making any decisions, you made your first real college friend during that process.

SEE ALSO: 18 Signs You're A Little Too Comfortable With Your Best Friends

The transition from high school to college is not easy, but somehow you made it out on the other side.

It is no secret that transitioning from high school to college is difficult. No matter how excited you were to get away from home, reality hit at some point. Although some people are better at adjusting than others, at the times when you were not, your roommate was there to listen. You helped each other out, and made it through together.

Late night talks were never more real.

Remember the first week when we stayed up talking until 2:00 a.m. every night? Late night talks will never be more real than they were freshman year. There was so much to plan for, figure out, and hope for. Your roommate talked, listened, laughed, and cried right there with you until one of you stopped responding because sleep took over.

You saw each other at your absolute lowest.

It was difficult being away from home. It hurt watching relationships end and losing touch with your hometown friends. It was stressful trying to get in the swing of college level classes. Despite all of the above, your roommate saw, listened, and strengthened you.

...but you also saw each other during your highest highs.

After seeing each other during the lows, seeing each other during the highs was such a great feeling. Getting involved on campus, making new friends, and succeeding in classes are only a few of the many ways you have watched each other grow.

There was so much time to bond before the stresses of college would later take over.

Freshman year was not "easy," but looking back on it, it was more manageable than you thought at the time. College only gets busier the more the years go on, which means less free time. Freshman year you went to lunch, dinner, the gym, class, events, and everything else possible together. You had the chance to be each other's go-to before it got tough.

No matter what, you always bounced back to being inseparable.

Phases of not talking or seeing each other because of business and stress would come and go. Even though you physically grew apart, you did not grow apart as friends. When one of you was in a funk, as soon as it was over, you bounced right back. You and your freshman roommate were inseparable.

The "remember that one time, freshman year..." stories never end.

Looking back on freshman year together is one of my favorite times. There are so many stories you have made, which at the time seemed so small, that bring the biggest laughs today. You will always have those stories to share together.

SEE ALSO: 15 Things You Say To Your Roommates Before Going Out

The unspoken rule that no matter how far apart you grow, you are always there for each other.

It is sad to look back and realize everything that has changed since your freshman year days. You started college with a clean slate, and all you really had was each other. Even though you went separate ways, there is an unspoken rule that you are still always there for each other.

Your old dorm room is now filled with two freshmen trying to make it through their first year. They will never know all the memories that you made in that room, and how it used to be your home. You can only hope that they will have the relationship you had together to reflect on in the years to come.

Cover Image Credit: Katie Ward

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As An Original Northeasterner, I Grew To Love The South And You Can, Too

Where the tea is sweet, and the accents are sweeter.


I'm not Southern-born. I'll come right out and say it. I was born in Connecticut and moved to Atlanta when I was 9 years old. I didn't know a single thing about the South, so I came without any expectations. When I got here, I remember that the very first thing I saw was a Waffle House. I thought it was so rare to see whatever a waffle house was but little did I know there was a WaHo (how southerners refer to Waffle House) every two miles down the street.

There is such a thing as "southern hospitality," and it's very pleasant for a newcomer to see. Southerners are raised with such a refreshing sense of politeness, and their accents are beautifully unique. It brings a smile to my face when I hear a southern accent because it's such a strong accent and one of my favorites. They answer your questions with "Yes, ma'am" or "No, ma'am" in the most respectful tone. I remember feeling so grown and empowered just because I got called ma'am. Southerners' vocabulary and phrases really have its ways of integrating into your own vernacular.

Before I came to Georgia, I never really said words like "Y'all" and "Fixin' to" but it's definitely in much of what I say now. I can tell when I go back up north to visit family that some of what I say may sound a little off because the dialect is very different. I find no shame in it, though, and neither should any southerner.

The weather in the South isn't so bad, in my opinion. Sure, there is very high humidity, but after living here for 10+ years, you learn how to deal with it. However, there's nothing like the summer thunderstorms. I love stormy, rainy weather and it rains quite often in the south, so when my birthday in July rolls around, I look forward to seeing that rain. It's the most peaceful weather to me and inspires me to write even more.

I could go on and on about the amazing fried foods here or the iconic yet insane Atlanta traffic, but those aren't what make me love the South. The people of the south are so different from up north but in the best ways. Everyone is so expressive and creative, as well as their own unique self. Southerners aren't the shaming kinds of people, but instead the kind who embrace who you are from the start. There's a fierce loyalty and a strong sense of appreciation that is just unmatched by any other place. No matter where I go, I always find comfort in knowing that I'll be coming back to this place I'm proud to call home.

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