Visualizing early Washington D.C.

Capitol building in spring 1814

Capitol Building in Spring 1814, visualized by the UMBC Imaging research center

UMBC’s Imaging research center is working on a best guess reconstruction of Washington DC in 1814 – the year the British systematically set fire to Government buildings including the then under-construction Capitol and White house.

Apparently what started off as a ‘simple’ exercise in 3D digital modelling has turned into full-blown research effort. The biggest challenge: lack of reliable historical evidence – early illustrations and maps of the city often turn out to be fanciful representations of reality.

You can catch an overview of the ongoing work in this video:

There’s more information on the project’s blog:

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