Dedicated in 1943, the Thomas Jefferson Memorial couldn’t be any more appropriately designed than if the President had done it himself! It was actually designed by American architect John Russell Pope, who employed the classical Roman style that Jefferson adored. In fact, much of the design was inspired by the style of Jefferson’s own home, Monticello, which in turn was based upon the Pantheon. The Memorial features a grand-yet-welcoming set of steps leading up to a rotunda of 26 Ionic columns, capped by a gracefully domed ceiling. The construction of this structure was a truly national effort: the exterior marble came from Vermont, the interior from Georgia, the floor from Tennessee, and the limestone ceiling from Indiana. Inside the building stands a bronze statue of Jefferson himself, facing the White House, as if imparting his wisdom to the current occupants. The Memorial is at its prettiest in the Spring, when surrounded by clouds of Japanese cherry blossoms.