This Day In History: May 30

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Former President William Howard Taft dedicates the Lincoln Memorial on the Washington Mall on May 30, 1922. At the time, Taft was serving as chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court. A crowd gathered on the Mall to witness the ceremony. 

The neoclassical monument honors 16th U.S. president Abraham Lincoln. Congress authorized construction of a monument to Lincoln on the Capitol grounds in 1867 (two years after his assassination), but it took until 1911 for funding to be approved; construction was then slowed due to World War I. The monument's design, by architect Henry Bacon, was modeled after the Parthenon in Athens. Inside features a 19-foot-high white marble statue of a seated Lincoln by artist Daniel Chester French. An inscription above it reads, "In this temple as in the hearts of the people for whom he saved the Union, the memory of Abraham Lincoln is enshrined forever."