National Geographic : 1957 Jan
64 Joh n Prihode From Mud to Marble, Washington Fulfills Pierre L'Enfant's Dream of Grandeur Surveying a wilderness, the French architect selected an eminence called Jenkins Hill for the Capitol and placed the White House a mile and a half distant. To link the two he laid out a highway. "The grand avenue," he wrote to President George Washington, "... will be most magnificent and most convenient." Actually, the Avenue of Pennsylvania began as a footpath. Later, logs reinforced muck, making a crude road. Charles Dickens, a visitor in 1842, saw it as one of Washington's "spacious avenues that begin in nothing and lead nowhere." Here, like a broken arrow, Pennsylvania Avenue shoots from the Capitol past the White House and on to distant Georgetown. Capital Airlines British-built turboprop Viscount flies over the city.