Great Elevator Ride

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Background for Long Elevator Rides

The first phase of construction ran until when a change in leadership scared donors and drove the society to bankruptcy. Mills died inand the incomplete monument sat unfinished for over 20 years — a foot-tall stump on the National Mall. A t Commission formed to oversee additional work on the monument. Army Corps of Engineers took over construction but despite trying a few different quarries, they could not find stone that was a perfect match for the blocks used in the first phase of construction.

The subtle changes in color around the foot mark are still visible on the monument today, [19] and are the source of one of D. Of course, when the Army Corps of Engineers set out to build what was then the tallest building in the world, they also had to devise a method to do so.

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To ferry the heavy stones up to the proper height, the builders installed an iron frame inside the monument. The frame had two parts: a staircase and a steam-powered elevator. The construction moved in segments of 20 feet [21] and the work was completed on Dec. Two months later, on Feb. Thomas Casey, stepped to the lectern and described the magnitude of the feat his team had accomplished:.

It is sufficient to say that although the dimensions of the foundation base were originally planned without due regard to the tremendous forces to be brought into play in building so large an obelisk, the resources of modern engineering science have supplied the means for the completion of the grandest monumental column ever erected in any area of the world.

President Chester A. Arthur praised the builders and accepted the obelisk on behalf of the nation.

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Well may he ever keep the foremost place in the hearts of his countrymen I do now, as President of the United States and in behalf of the people, receive this monument from the hands of its builder, and declare it dedicated from this time forth to the immortal name and memory of George Washington. Naval Academy band. Not surprisingly, Washingtonians were eager to visit the top of the monument once the pomp and circumstance died down. Initially, the existing freight elevator was used to ferry visitors up and down, though this was only a temporary measure.

Interesting aside: elevator operator Edward Wayson told The Evening Star that in general, men seemed more scared in the elevator than women.

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The traffic took its toll. The limited staff who were tasked with keeping an eye on the entire foot-high structure and answering questions were unable to prevent the damage. Fortunately, efforts to improve the elevator and make it more visitor-friendly were already underway The grand debut of the new elevator took place on Oct. At p. The first group went back down, and the next 29 people took their turn in the elevator. The new elevator was an instant hit. The day after it opened, people waited in line for hours to ride to the top of the monument.

On Oct. Two days later, The Evening Star reported that elevator capacity increased to accommodate the demand.

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He discovered the necessity of this one day when the crowd inside forced the people to stand on the benches, whereby one of them was broken. Their removal gives room for fully ten more passengers. Before that, the greatest load carried was thirty-eight passengers, while on Friday afternoon on the last trip forty-seven made the ascent in the car.

The excitement was short-lived, however. Twice in the next two months — on Oct. Despite another closure in November for additional repairs, [42] more than 50, people used the elevator in There have been periodic closures and outages in the decades since — including, notably in when a 5. View the discussion thread. The different colors of the Washington Monument stones are visible around the foot mark. Source: Library of Congress Of course, when the Army Corps of Engineers Great Elevator Ride out to build what was then the tallest building in the world, they also had to devise a method to do so.

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The 1, foot Eiffel Tower overtook it in July 5, Sherman, Author [S. Tags s 19th century National Mall Washington Monument. You Might Also Like The Witnesses In this article, we highlight three little-known witnesses of presidential assassination.

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Great Elevator Ride

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