McPherson Square, Washington, D.C.



United States

McPherson Square

Laid out as a park in Pierre L'Enfant's 1791 plan for the city of Washington, D.C., this 1.6-acre relatively level public square bounded by K Street, I (Eye) Street, 15th Street, and Vermont Avenue forms part of the city's historic monumental core, along with Lafayette Park and Farragut Square. Originally known as Reservation No. 11, the park’s most iconic feature is the  central bronze equestrian statue of Maj. Gen. James Birdseye McPherson, sculpted by Louis Rebisso from the materials of a captured cannon. The twelve-foot-tall sculpture rests on a granite pedestal in a central, circular lawn panel ringed by flowering annuals and a low decorative metal railing. The sculpture was erected and dedicated in 1876, with the park subsequently named in honor of McPherson.

Paved and scored concrete paths traverse the square, lined by benches, lighting, and d a variety of deciduous canopy trees which are parsed throughout the six triangular-shaped perimeter lawn panels. The two central rectangular central lawn panels are without trees offering open views to the equestrian statue.

In 2010 the park's furnishings, sod, and plantings were renewed by the National Park Service as part of the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. McPherson Square is listed as a contributing feature in the L’Enfant Plan of the City of Washington, D.C. National Register nomination (1997) and was documented by HABS as part of The Plan of Washington, D.C., project from 1990-93.

Location and Nearby Landscapes

Nearby Landscapes