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Approaching by way of Georgetown and the Aqueduct Bridge, the visitor enters at the rear of the cemetery, and may ride through it, and out at the arched main entrance, whence a country road leads down to the city of Alexandria. This is the route projected for the great national highway from Washington to Mount Vernon, known as the Mount Vernon Avenue, to construct which a corporation called the Mount Vernon Avenue Association was incorporated by the Virginia Assembly in February, 1888. There is now no good and direct land route to Mount Vernon, and this road is intended to supply the deficiency. The avenue is to be two hundred feet wide, of which sixty or perhaps ninety feet will be given to the road, and the remainder will be a parkway, devoted to lawns, shades, and statues of national heroes. To lend a national character to the work it is proposed to divide it into as many sections as there are States, and allot a section to each State.
In returning to Washington by way of Georgetown we pass within a block or two of Kalorama, now being graded and staked out into city lots, but until its purchase by a syndicate in 1887, one of the most charming and rural retreats within the city's environs. The old estate was one of the landmarks of the city. Anthony Holmead, a canny Scotchman,
ought the estate of the Indians at an early day, and about 1750 erected of English bricks the oldfashioned farm-house that formed the nucleus of the modern mansion. After passing through several hands the estate was bought in 1807 by Joel Bar
low, the poet and statesman, who had returned to America in 1805, after a seventeen-years' absence. Mr. Barlow enlarged and improved the mansion and grounds, and named it Kalorama, from the Greek, signifying “fine view.” The poet lived there four happy years, dispensing an elegant hospitality, enjoying the friendship of Jefferson, and Madison, and others high in authority, his house the common meeting-place of poets, scholars, authors, inventors, and visiting strangers of distinction, but in 1811 President Madison insisted on his accepting the mission to France, with which country our relations had become so inimical as to threaten open rupture. Mr. Barlow therefore leased Kalorama to the French Minister, and sailed in the Constitution frigate for France, and lost his life late in December, 1812, while seeking to return from Wilna in Poland, whither he had gone, on invitation, to meet Napoleon and sign a treaty, the latter being then absent on his Russian campaign. The old estate has since seen vicissitudes. It was left by will to Mrs. Barlow, who resided there until her death in 1818, when by the provisions of her will it fell to Thomas Barlow, the nephew of her deceased husband. He sold it in 1819 to Judge Henry Baldwin, of the Supreme Court, brother of Mrs. Barlow; and the latter in 1831 to Colonel George Bomford of the Ordnance Department, who had married Mrs. Barlow's sister Clara. Colonel Bomford was the intimate friend of Commodore Decatur, and on the sad death of that gentleman in a duel with Commodore Barron in March, 1821, his remains were deposited in the fam
ily vault at Kalorama, and remained there for several years, until finally deposited in the vaults of St. Peter's Church at Philadelphia. Colonel Bomford conveyed the estate in 1846 to George R. Lovett as trustee of Louisa Fletcher, in whose hands it remained until sold to the syndicate in 1887.
Another poet's haunt is found on Meridian Hill, at the end of Sixteenth Street, in the log cottage which the poet of the Sierras, Joaquin Miller, erected on first coming to Washington, and which continued to be his home during his sojourn. There the eminence on which it is placed commands a beautiful view of the city and its environs. Of the quaint attractions of Bladensburg, five miles to the eastward, we have before spoken. To ride over the smooth pike to the ancient village, alight at the old Washington tavern there, and in its wide, bare ordinary partake of cakes and ale, is very much like being transported back to Washington's day. In another quarter, the southeastern, a pleasant drive from the hotels or White House, lie the Arsenal and the Navy Yard. The latter was established in 1799, and contains two ship houses and nearly all the workshops necessary for the construction of a sailing vessel. For many years it was a scene of great activity, many of the finest vessels of the navy in early days having been constructed there. At present little but repairing is done. There is a museum which contains a collection of old cannon and munitions of war of more than ordinary interest,—the Spanish cannon, for instance, cast in 1490, and used by Cortez in the conquest of Peru ; a mortar captured from Corn
wallis, and many relics of the late war.
The Navy Yard is situated on the Eastern Branch. About half a mile below, occupying the point made by the
JOAQUIN MILLER'S LOG CABIN ON MERIDIAN HILL. junction of this branch with the Potomac, are the beautiful grounds of the Arsenal, a grisly spot for all its beauty, for here stood the old penitentiary in which the trials of the assassins of President Lincoln and Secretary Seward were held, and in the yard of which they were hanged and buried. The assassin Booth is said to have been buried for a time beneath one of its cells. There is no hint of those terrible days in the rich greensward and nicely kept walks and drives of to-day, although the conical heaps of cannon-balls and black-throated columbiads looking out upon the river remind one of the times when war seemed the city's normal condition.