District Wanderings

Not much time to write lately. Work is once again consuming way too much of my free time. But I have to take what I can get. The day job has me on site, downtown within the Federal Triangle of DC for at least this week. Being an opportunist, and one who abhors the rush hour commuter surges, I travel into the city very early. That gives me time to walk around through several of the parks and plazas well before the rush. Today for instance I strolled through the World War II and Vietnam War Memorials on the mall.

Over the last year, I’ve gotten to know DC by way of its memorials. The Egyptians built pyramids. The Europeans built cathedrals. I think we Americans will be remembered for our memorials to some extent. I find it fun to relate directions to co-workers by way of the monuments. “You go through General Scott’s, then turn left down to Admiral Farragut, that should get you down near General Rawlins.”

To which the response is, “Who the heck was General Rawlins?”

“Oh, he was the Karl Rove of the Grant administration. Did you know about him?” Then of course the door is open for me to recount how Rawlins kept Grant away from the strong drinks, dabbled with the “western” and later Washington politics, and generally kept U.S. Grant’s staff in proper order. I’ve often said, Rawlins does deserve an updated, scholarly treatment. In my opinion, you cannot discuss Grant, and by extension the war itself at the operational and strategic level to some degree, without discussing his relation to Rawlins.

Overall though I have been updating hte Antietam Markers groupings from time to time. And I’m short a report of Schoolhouse Ridge at Harpers Ferry. And of course lots of “discoveries” in D.C. As time permits, and onward if not upward….


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