If you are an RV traveler looking to learn more about the Women's Rights Movement then you can't beat a visit to the Belmont-Paul Women's Equality National Monument in Washington D.C. Located near Capitol Hill and standing as a icon for the women's rights movement, the Belmont-Paul Women's Equality National Monument was built in 1800 and is one of the oldest residential houses within Washington D.C. During the War of 1812 the original house was destroyed by British forces, but in the 20th century the house was known as the headquarters of the National Women’s Party.
The National Women’s Party was a political movement that fought for equal rights for women in the United States. The party was founded in 1916 and pushed the women’s suffrage movement from state-by-state cases to push for constitutional amendment. The party was active until 1997 when it moved from lobbying activities to become a 501(c)3 educational organization. The monument was designated as such by President Barrack Obama in 2016.
Belmont-Paul Women's Equality National Monument house takes its name in honor of Alva Belmont. Belmont was the NWP president from 1920-1933 and donated thousands of dollars to the women’s equality movement, which in turn gave the party the ability to purchase the new headquarters. The house played a huge role in fostering community within the movement and it also functioned as a hotel and second home for some members up until the 1990s. Today, visitors are able to visit the monument Wednesday through Sunday and learn more about the history of the house and the movement for equal rights.
While there are no RV camping options available at the Belmont-Paul Women's Equality National Monument the National Park Service runs Greenbelt Park in Maryland which is only a few miles from the monument. Here you can choose to call the park home by staying at one of the many RV-friendly campsites. The Belmont-Paul Women's Equality National Monument is open all year round.
Belmont-Paul Women's Equality National Monument is located in Washington D.C and is just down the road from the United States Capitol. The monument is in a very busy area of Washington D.C and can be accessed from the north, south, east and west. Many people choose to not drive to the monument due to the traffic and lack of parking due to the proximity to the White House.
One of the positives of being in such a busy location is that you will be able to pick up supplies or visit any amenities you can think of before you go and check out the monument. There will be many people selling snacks near the monument and there are also grocery stores close by too.
The monument is a free-standing, federal style brick house that is presently surrounded by a cast-iron fence. Look for the entrance on 2nd Street if you are planning on going into the building as the doors that face Constitution Avenue are not entrances. The building also has a lift accessible entrance located on 2nd Street.
Due to the prominent location of the Belmont-Paul Women's Equality National Monument it can be hard to find parking large enough for RV's within close proximity to the area. One way to combat this is to park further out in the suburbs and catch the metro into the city.
There are plenty of public transportation options available thanks to the monument being located so close to Capitol Hill. Consider either catching the metro into the city or taking a bus.
Located around 11 miles north-east of the monument in Maryland is Greenbelt Park. This is a hidden gem of a park where you can feel like you are in the middle of nowhere yet you are so close to the hustle and bustle of Washington D.C.
The park is perfect for RV lovers wanting to stay near the Belmont-Paul Women's Equality National Monument as it features 174 sites that are known for being flat and spacious. All of the sites at Greenbelt Park are primitive but there are some good amenities to be found, including showers, bathrooms, and a dump station. The campground is also pet friendly and you should also be able to get cell phone reception on all of the major networks when inside the campground.
As this campground is one of the closest to Washington D.C it does get busy during the warmer months. Because of this, try to reserve a campsite in advance before your trip to the area. Greenbelt Park is open to camping all year round.
The Belmont-Paul Women's Equality National Monument is open Wednesday through Sunday at normal business hours and does offer visitors the chance to check it out via a guided tour. There are usually four tours held throughout the day that depart at 9:30AM, 11AM, 2:00PM and 3:30PM. If you are traveling in a group larger than 10 people you will need to contact the monument to schedule a private tour.
Seeing the monument with the help of a guide is the most recommended way to do so as you will learn a lot from the knowledge that they have acquired by working there.
Within the Belmont-Paul Women's Equality National Monument you will find different permanent and sometimes traveling exhibits. These detail the fight for equality and those past and present people who have played a role in helping women achieve an equal standing in society.
The monument also features more than 250 artifacts that detail the story of the National Women’s Party through interesting photographs, objects, and archival materials.
At the National Museum of American History you can also find exhibitions dedicated to celebrating the role of women in the United States of America. The museum is home to the Changing Times, Changing First Ladies exhibition that spotlights the evolving roles and important contributions that the wives of presidents have made to the country.
There is also a fantastic exhibition called The First Lady of Song: Ella Fitzgerald at 100 that celebrates the life and career of the famed jazz singer. The museum is open every day of the year besides Christmas Day.
Following the creation of the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial Wall in 1982, decorated war nurse Diane Carlson Evans felt uneasy that the women involved in the Vietnam War had not had their service commemorated. To combat this she co-founded the Vietnam Women’s Memorial Foundation in 1984 to recognize the contribution of women during the war. This led to the creation of the Vietnam Women's Memorial by sculptor Glenna Goodacre. This beautiful bronze statue is a must see and sits close to the other Vietnam memorials at Washington D.C.
Once you have seen the Belmont-Paul Women's Equality National Monument there are many other interesting places within Washington D.C that celebrate the contributions of women.
The National Museum of Women in the Arts is the only known major museum in the world that is solely dedicated to celebrating women's achievements in the visual, performing, and literary arts. The museum is open Monday through Sunday and features permanent and traveling exhibitions that revolve around women in art. The museum is a perfect next stop after your visit to the Belmont-Paul Women's Equality National Monument.
Once you have explored all that Belmont-Paul Women's Equality National Monument has to offer, via a guided or self-guided tour, think about a stop into the small gift shop before you continue on with your day.
The gift shop features items for sale that help to pay for the ongoing costs of operating the monument (such as paying for the rangers and any future repairs needed). For more information on the gift shop you can contact the staff of the Belmont-Paul Women's Equality National Monument via their website.