Albert Einstein, everyone’s favorite physicist contemplates the universe from his perch on the lawn of the National Academy of Science on Constitution Avenue in Washington, DC.
Einstein’s best known for developing the theories of relativity and quantum mechanics and numerous other things that I don’t understand. And this memorial calls out the significant contributions he made in understanding our world.
You can read his famous formulas; they’re written on the pages he’s holding. And if you look down on the floor you see this wonderful display of planets and galaxies mapped out by the folks at the US Naval Observatory. If you stand right in the middle of the map it seems as if Dr. Einstein is staring right at you, and you can imagine what it would be like if he called on you in class.
Einstein comes to America as a refugee fleeing Nazi Germany. The Nobel prize winner thus becomes one untold number of refugees making America stronger by their presence. He takes a position at Princeton University where he works until his death in 1955.
Now those of you who saw our episode about Mary McLoud Bethune will recognize the distinctive style of the sculptor, Robert Berks. Berks based the statue on a bust he did of Einstein in the 50s.
Einstein’s right across the street from the Vietnam Veterans Memorial so I always bring folks on my tours over to visit the good professor.
And the coolest thing about Einstein: It’s the only statue in Washington that you’re allowed to climb on!