Chapter 11. The National Mall

The National Mall

Looking west on the Mall during an August evening. Taken at ISO 320, f/4.5, 1/200 second with a 130mm lens.

Why It's Worth a Photograph

The National Mall is an essential part of the United States' collective being. It is where the documents that formed the nation and defined the rights of those who live under its flag are kept. The Mall is where the memorials to those who founded the country are and where those who have fought to protect it are remembered. The nation's collection of art, culture, and wisdom are exhibited and protected at the Mall. Definitive protests and infamous speeches here have altered the consciousness of the country forever.

Where Can I Get the Best Shot?

There are a few classic places from which to photograph the National Mall, and there are hundreds more great vantage points to find as well.

The best locations from which to photograph the National Mall: (A) south of the U.S. Marine Corps War Memorial, (B) the west side of the Capitol, (C) the southeast corner of the Lincoln Memorial, (D) between 3rd St. NW and 14th St. NW within the Mall, (E) the Old Post Office Tower, (F) atop the Washington Monument, and (G) next to the Lincoln Reflecting Pool. Nearby photo ops: (3) Ford's Theatre, (9) National Air and Space Museum, (10) National Archives, (14) Old Post Office tower, (16) Smithsonian Institution Castle, (19) Ulysses S. Grant Memorial, (21) United States Botanic Garden, (22) United States Capitol, (27) Washington Monument, (28) White House and President's Park.

Figure 11.1. The best locations from which to photograph the National Mall: (A) south of the U.S. Marine Corps War Memorial, (B) the west side of the Capitol, (C) the southeast corner of the Lincoln Memorial, (D) between 3rd St. NW and 14th St. NW within the Mall, (E) the Old Post Office Tower, (F) atop the Washington Monument, and (G) next to the Lincoln Reflecting Pool. Nearby photo ops: (3) Ford's Theatre, (9) National Air and Space Museum, (10) ...

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