President Lincoln and Soldier's Home
National Monument Highpoint Trip Report

Date: April 18, 2008
Author: John Mitchler

General Description: North of the National Mall in Washington, D.C., this hilltop provides a pleasant urban stroll on the lawn around a historic cottage.

Distance: 200 feet one-way
Difficulty: easy walk
Elevation gain: 5 feet
Summit elevation: 320 feet

Maps: DeLorme page 47

Access/permits: Open / None required
Best months: all year
Visitor Centers: Visitor Education Center, 100 feet northwest of Lincoln Cottage, along Lincoln Drive.

Highpoint Description: a gentle rise in a grassy, urban-park setting

Finding the Trailhead

From the White House on the north end of the National Mall, take New York Avenue northeast for about 2 miles and turn left (north) on North Capitol Street. Follow this for about 6 miles and turn left (southwest) on Rock Creek Church Road. Continue for 3/5 mile and turn left (southeast) on Upshur Street. Drive a block and turn left (north) on Lincoln Drive passing the visitor center on your left as you drive a block to a large parking lot on your left.

The Hike

From the parking lot, walk south, crossing Lincoln Drive. Stay left as you follow Lincoln Drive for a block, noticing a driveway on your left, and then a water tank on your left. Stroll over to the tank and search for the highest ground on grassy lawn. The historic cottage is a hundred feet south of the tank.

highpoint location

About the Park

In July 2000, President Clinton declared as a national monument the summer cottage where President Lincoln penned the first drafts of the Emancipation Proclamation. Lincolnís Cottage, formerly known as Anderson Cottage, the proclamation preserved the 2.1 acres surrounding this structure. The cottage, constructed in 1842, also served as the first national Soldierís Home since its founding in 1851. Lincoln resided there from 1862-1864. The hilltop commands sweeping views of Washington.

Camping and services

None in the immediate area.