Washington, DC: George Washington's Hippo

George Washington's papers mention a "hippopotamus" in the mud of the Potomac River near Mt. Vernon. It was probably just a dredging machine, but the students at George Washington University decided to take the word literally, and unveiled a small bronze hippo in 1996 named "GW's River Horse," along with a plaque inviting visitors to rub its nose for good luck.

21st St. NW, Washington, DC
On the campus of George Washington University, on the southwest corner of H St. NW and 21st St. NW, in front of Lisner Auditorium.
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Hippo statue.

George Washington's Hippo

The hippo statue in a cute area of the college section of DC. Good luck finding parking!

[Vance Erwin, 09/20/2014]
Potomac River Horse

In the middle of George Washington University's campus sits a hippopotamus statue. It's not terribly large, but the plaque situated beneath it is amusing...

"GW's River Horse
Legend has it that the Potomac was once home to these wondrous beasts. George and Martha Washington are even said to have watched them cavort in the river shallows from the porch of their beloved Mount Vernon on summer evenings. Credited with enhancing the fertility of the plantation, the Washingtons believed the hippopotamuses brought them good luck, and children on the estate often attempted to lure the creatures close enough to the shore to touch a nose for good luck.

So, too, many generations of students of The George Washington University.

Art for wisdom, Science for joy, Politics for beauty, And a Hippo for hope."

[Elvis Presley, 06/19/2001]
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