Experiencing Great Architecture and Creative Built Environments

Harold Van Buren Magonigle

McKinley National Memorial (1907)

Harold Van Buren Magonigle, Architect

800 McKinley Monument Drive NW, Canton, OH 44708

Map and Aerial View

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Visited June 1, 2011

When I am able to take a few days and just go to a city I have never been to ( and know very little about), I love to just come upon unexpected discoveries. This was one of those discoveries. The monument is a domed classical building on the top of a hill with 108 steps leading up to it. The great lawn which extends 575 feet in front of the steps ( which I learned on a web site after my visit) was originally a five-tiered reflecting pool. The water was removed in 1951. The finely detailed building on the interior has a rotunda with a coffered dome and a round leaded stained glass oculus. Directly under the oculus is the final resting place of President McKinley and his wife Ida,  in a dark marble tomb raised on a pedestal in the center of the rotunda.

Not a destination that I would have planned a roadtrip around, but was a very pleasing diversion. It’s classical proportions and prominence on the hill with the great lawn leading up to it was impressive indeed. I am sure that the climb up the 108 steps was good for me as well.

I had just visited the Pro Football Hall of Fame building nearby – lets just say that strictly from an architectural standpoint – if you are in the area stick with the McKinley National Memorial…