The Smithsonian Castle: An Allegory

by Jerry Leibowitz “He who comprehends the Smithsonian Castle, comprehends the universe…”                                                                                 An old Washington proverb possibly attributed to Joseph Alsop see Gore Vidal, The Smithsonian Institution, a work of fiction[1] “What were they thinking when they dug that hole…” Graham Parker[2] Looking back, we know that 1846 was another year that America didContinue reading The Smithsonian Castle: An Allegory

Encouraging American Genius

Encouraging American Genius                                                                                                                 By Jerry Leibowitz We are stardust, billion year old carbon We are golden, caught in the devil’s bargain And we’ve got to get ourselves back to the garden.                                                                                                 Joni Mitchell I have been thinking about what it means to “encourage American Genius” since I wrote my last piece on theContinue reading “Encouraging American Genius”

Chapter 35

Chapter 35 SISTERS OF CHARITY                                                                                                                 June 7, 1809 My Dearest Sister Lady Frances, I think often of the day were together in Syon at a time when my life was in disarray and I was just beginning to learn about the great gifts the Lord has bestowed on me. I am far along onContinue reading “Chapter 35”

Bust of a Man III- Return of Bill Richmond

“There are some things you can’t cover up with lipstick and powder…” Elvis Costello “They call it the rope-a-dope. Well, I’m the dope. Ali just laid on the rope and I, like a dope, kept punching until I got tired. But he was probably the most smart fighter I’ve ever gotten into the ring with.”Continue reading “Bust of a Man III- Return of Bill Richmond”

Who is James Renwick and what are his Plans?

Who is James Renwick? This is not an Ayn Rand question about a fictional engineer. There was an engineer turned architect named James Renwick (1819-1895) who designed several of the most iconic structures built in America’s early years, including the Castle at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D. C., and St. Patrick’s Cathedral in NewContinue reading “Who is James Renwick and what are his Plans?”

The Great American Essay

By Jerry Leibowitz …fiat justitia, ruat coelum Lord Mansfield, The Decision in Somerset’s Case, June 22, 1772[1] America is false to the past, false to the present, and solemnly binds herself to be false to the future .Frederick Douglass, 1852[2] The wealthy landowners of Virginia and other southern colonies were fat and happy in 1766.Continue reading “The Great American Essay”