Arlington Memorial Bridge Complex, Washington, D.C

Photographs of Arlington Memorial Bridge and the Watergate Steps



A brief history:


  • Arlington Memorial Bridge is a Neoclassical masonry, steel & stone arch bridge which crosses the Potomac River connecting Virginia to the U.S capital, Washington, D.C. the bridge was designed by architectural firm McKim, Meade and White


  • Arlington Memorial Bridge and Avenue provides a ceremonial gateway to the capital of the United States, Washington, D.C from neighbouring Virginia.


  • Completed in 1931 and officially opened to traffic on May 6th, 1932, the bridge was intended to show that the United States was a united nation after the American Civil War between the Union (North) and the Confedorates (South), affectively linking a memorial on the north side of the Potomac River (Lincoln Memorial) & the south side of the Potomac River (Arlington House, Robert E. Lee Memorial).


  • The bridge was designed by architectural firm McKim, Meade and White with some additional decorative elements including the Neoclassical Arts of War sculpture, Valor and sacrifice at the north-eastern entrance sculpted by Leo Friedlander.


  • in 1923 a grand tree-lined boulevard known as the "Avenue of Heroes" was planned by William Mitchell Kendall, this includes; The Hiker, Seabees Memorial, 4th Division Memorial, Rear Admiral Ricahrd Evelyn Byrd Memorial, 101st Airborne Division Memorial & Women in Military Service for America Memorial, providing a connection between Memorial Bridge with Arlington National Cemetery.



  • The Watergate Steps were built as part of the Arlington Memorial Bridge complex in 1932.


  • The steps are located between the Potomac River & the Lincoln Memorial.


  • The actual idea behind the steps was that vessels would pull up to the banks of the Potomac River and drop off foreign dignitaries to be welcomed into the city, but this was never quite accomplished.


  • Today the steps are very popular with tourists, hikers and joggers particularly around sunset time.


  • The steps afford splendid views up and down the Potomac River, across to Arlington National Cemetery (Arlington House), across to the Rosslyn skyline and the western side of the Lincoln Memorial.

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If you would like to more of my photography from areas surrounding Arlington Memorial Bridge & the Watergate Steps, please visit these galleries:













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