National Building Museum (Photo: Lasthib)
Montgomery Meigs is best known as the quartermaster general of the Union Army who played a key role during the Civil War. Less known, however, is that he also was an engineer, architect, inventor, patron of the arts, and regent of the Smithsonian. As such, Meigs left an indelible impression on the face of the capital city. Delve into his fascinating life and legacy as you enjoy a full day of history and architecture with Washington, D.C., as your backdrop.
As an engineer, Meigs was responsible for the construction of the dome of the U.S. Capitol and the design and construction of the aqueduct bringing water to Washington. As an architect, he developed the original concept for the Smithsonian Arts and Industries building, and the design and construction of what is now the National Building Museum as well as numerous military buildings, including one that still remains at Fort Myer. Meigs held 13 patents for his inventions. In addition, he was a patron of the arts, and respected for his accomplishments as a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the American Philosophical Society.
The tour visits the Arts and Industries Building, the National Building Museum, Battleground National Cemetery, and the Commissary Sergeant's Quarters at Fort Myer, as well as views other buildings and works by Meigs. Lunch is at a local restaurant. Lecturer in history, urban studies, and architecture Bill Keene leads the tour.
Know Before You Go
- The tour departs by motorcoach from downtown Washington, DC. Content delivered by the study leader on the way to the destination is an integral part of the study tour experience. Meeting the group once the tour is en route is discouraged.
- Tour participants meet at and leave by bus from the Holiday Inn Capitol, 550 C St SW (corner of 6th & C Sts). No fringe stop applies.
- Photo ID is required for this program.
- Smithsonian is a mask-friendly environment. Masks are strongly recommended to be worn on buses at all times and may also be required at various indoor sites.
- Registration for this tour will end by 2 p.m. ET on Thurday, March 23, 2023.
- For additional tour information: