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Armillary sphere


In 1956 the Georgetown Garden Club erected a memorial to Sarah Louisa Rittenhouse, through whose “vision and perseverance this land became Montrose Park”.  Rittenhouse had worked relentlessly to persuade Congress and the Senate to authorize purchase of the Montrose estate, which was up for sale and slated for development.  She lobbied Congress to buy the property and “enhance the value of the whole District by making public property what is one of the most beautiful and picturesque tracts within its boundaries.” (Petition to Congress for Certain Improvements in Georgetown, D.C., January 11, 1904).  The Garden Club commissioned architect Gertrude Sawyer who designed a bronze armillary sphere set on top of a limestone pedestal.  Alterations were made to the center of the Entrance Ellipse, originally designed by Horace Peaslee in 1919, in order to accommodate the memorial.

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