The capital of the United States of America was founded in 1791 inthe District of Columbia. The capital received the name of Washington — afterthe name of the commander-in-chief of the American army in the War forIndependence who became the first President of the United States. PresidentWashington himself took an active part in choosing the place for the capital.He invited a famous French engineer, Pierre Charles L'Enfant. With a help andadvice of Washington, he drew a plan of a city with straight streets runningfar into a great distance. It was something new in those days.
There is a law in Washington against building structures higherthan the Capitol; therefore it represents a different appearance from New Yorkwith its sky-scrapers. The Capitol, where the Congress meets is a very high andbeautiful building with white marble columns. It is in the very centre of thecity. Four avenues radiate from the Capitol dividing the city into four parts.Not far from the Capitol is the Library of Congress. It holds five millionbooks. Today Washington is a city which attracts a lot of tourists by itsfashionable hotels, restaurants and sightseeing attractions as “Mount Vernon”the house of the first president George Washington, the Lincoln Memorial, theTomb of the Unknown Soldier, the White House and others. The White House, theresidence of the president, is the oldest public structure in the capital andone of the most beautiful. Among the newer buildings one of the most imposingis the National Gallery of Art.
The city of Washington, with its long wide avenues, with shadytrees on both sides, its low buildings and its crowds of government officialsis very interesting and beautiful.
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