Published On: Sun, Jul 16th, 2017

Trip to National Museum of the American Indian

For our trip to the National Museum of the American Indian, we went to Union Station to grab a bite to eat then walk to the National Mall where the museum is.  On the way there’s a little oasis in the triangle formed by New Jersey Ave NW, Louisiana Ave NW and D Street NW.  It’s the Japanese American Memorial to Patriotism During World War II.

The Japanese American Memorial to Patriotism During World War II is a National Park Service site to commemorate the experience of American citizens of Japanese ancestry and their parents who patriotically supported the United States despite unjust treatment during World War II.

The work is located at Louisiana Avenue and D Street, Northwest, Washington, D.C. in Washington, D.C. The Memorial commemorates Japanese American war involvement, veterans and patriotism during World War II, as well as the patriotism and endurance of those held in Japanese American internment, or, incarceration camps, and detention centers.

There’s a sculpture in the middle, called Golden Crane, with two Japanese cranes caught in barbed wire. They sit on top of a tall pedestal with grooves suggestive of drill cores used to extract stone from quarries. It’s in a small area with a wall that features inscriptions of the names of the 10 major internment camps where over 120,000 Japanese Americans were confined.

Japanese American Memorial to Patriotism During World War II
Japanese American Memorial to Patriotism During World War II
Japanese American Memorial to Patriotism During World War II

It’s an easy walk, has grand views of Upper Senate Park and it’s fountain, the Capitol Building that you’ll hear many visitors call the White House, plenty of statues and memorials, the reflecting pool, the large expanse of grass with the Washington Monument punctuating the vista in the background, and finally you’ll reach the museum.  I sometimes enjoy the walk than the end destination.

There was an event, Living Earth Day, but we got there after most of the festivities were done.  Najwa, however, only cares about one thing.  The trivia game next to ImagiNATIONS.

Trivia game at ImagiNATIONS at the National Museum of the American Indian

After dragging Najwa away where she slaughters all the visitors, considering she’s played the trivia so many times she knows most of the answers by now, we checked out one of the exhibits about the Inca civilization.  Peru is on our bucket list so this is a good primer of the culture and history we can expect when we get there.

National Museum of the American Indian
National Museum of the American Indian

A couple of years ago at the Smithsonian Folklife Festival, Peru was featured, and there was this rope bridge that the natives are famous for making.  These bridges are made from strands of grass, lots of grass, weaved together and strewn across a gaping canyon below.  It swings and shakes and plays havoc on your nerves, assuming you’re brave enough to cross the real thing.  Nduku says if we’re ever facing one of these in Peru, she’ll pass.  I’m still considering it; then again, I’m not looking hundreds of feet into a canyon below.

These panels show how they make the bridges.  Doesn’t make me feel more confident I’ll do it.

National Museum of the American Indian

Back in the day, before calculators came standard on mobile phones, before the TI-81, before any form of technology, the Incan represented numbers uing knots in a rope.  Crafty.

National Museum of the American Indian
National Museum of the American Indian

Good visit as usual.  The exhibit had a bunch of interactive, touch screen activities for the kids [anyone, really, but Najwa especially enjoyed them], lots of interesting pieces, as museums usually do.

National Museum of the American Indian
National Museum of the American Indian

Leave a comment

You must be Logged in to post comment.

 
 

About the Author

David Gaines

- David Gaines is a Washington, DC, resident transplanted from North Carolina whose dream career was a newspaper writer but settled for the recruiting industry and simply blogging about whatever thoughts crosses his mind.



Upcoming Events

  1. USA Science & Engineering Festival

    Saturday, April 7, 2018 - Sunday, April 8, 2018

Archives

Categories