No Longer for Display in the U.S. Capitol: George Washington Zeus

From Wikipedia (Image at right: Photo by Mark Pellegrini via Creation Commons 2.5):

The Congress of the United States commissioned Horatio Greenough to create this statue for display in the Capitol Rotunda. When the marble statue arrived in the Washington, D.C. in 1841, however, it immediately generated controversy and criticism.

Many found the sight of a half-naked Washington offensive, even comical. The statue was relocated to the east lawn of the Capitol in 1843. Disapproval continued and some joked that Washington was desperately reaching for his clothes, then on exhibit at the Patent Office several blocks to the north.

In 1908, Washington was finally brought back indoors when Congress transferred it to the Smithsonian Institution.

It remained at the Smithsonian Castle until 1964, when it was moved to the new Museum of History and Technology (now the National Museum of American History). The marble Washington has been exhibited on the second floor of that building since that time.

Edited image from Library of Congress digital collection. African American school children facing the Horatio Greenough statue of George Washington at the U.S. Capitol. Published c. 1899. by Frances Benjamin Johnston, 1864–1952, photographer.

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  • George

    And this is news, why???? The statue has been “No Longer for Display in the U.S. Capitol” for over 150 years! When it was in the capitol (building), it was there for less than two years. It has been–as it still is–on public display in the U.S. Capital City ever since.

  • http://disinfo.com Disinformation

    Guess you haven't read “The Lost Symbol”… right it's more “history” than “news” in the new sense, but an interesting reflection, at least to some here at disinfo.com, on American society at the time.

  • Rga

    Interesting that on his grave headstone, it is inscribed as George Washington, FreeMason & President of the United States. Masonry comes first. Much more here that meets the eye.

  • Rga

    Interesting that on his grave headstone, it is inscribed as George Washington, FreeMason & President of the United States. Masonry comes first. Much more here that meets the eye.

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