New York

Mural in Northeast DC Honors Workers Who Built Lincoln Memorial

In the old, industrial neighborhood of Eckington in Northeast Washington, D.C., a new mural honoring those who built the Lincoln Memorial is drawing praise.

“It's not just honoring Abraham Lincoln, but it's honoring the people -- the men and women -- that actually built the memorial,” said consumer attorney and amateur photographer Flavio Cumpiano. “It's important for historical purposes, and also it's a beautiful work of art.”

Visible from several blocks away, the mural was designed by New York artist Garen Baker. He won a $50,000 nationwide contest to commission the work on an old warehouse.

Baker told News4 it was important to remember the sons and grandsons of slaves who helped construct Lincoln.

The mural is named “28 Blocks,” after the stones used to build Lincoln and is part of an effort to repurpose the industrial land into new businesses and homes.

“What we are doing here is bringing art and history to what was a blighted area,” said Joia Nuri, a spokeswoman for the D.C. Department of General Services.

The mural is alongside the increasingly popular Metropolitan Branch Trail.

“I think it's great. I think we can all use a little more art in our life,” said Thomas Worth, a Trail Ranger at the Washington Area Bicycle Association.

A ceremony saluting the mural is expected later this fall.

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