Tag Archives: Thomas Jefferson

Presidents’ Day at the Library of Congress


Gutenberg Bible at the Library of Congress (source: http://www.loc.gov)

I’ve been to the Library of Congress many times before and always loved it. The Library was created back in 1800 when the government moved from Philadelphia to Washington, which makes it the oldest federal cultural institution in the U.S. It was initially housed in various parts of the Capitol and not until 1897 did it gain its own separate space known today as the Jefferson Building.

The Great Hall welcomes visitors with two grand marble staircases on each side with larger-than-life female figure holding a torch of electric light, and colorful mosaics devoted to the disciplines such as Theology and Law. This light-filled, soaring space really dazzles with unique works created by nearly 50 American painters and sculptors. And just beyond the point where you pass under the grand “Library of Congress” sign above a tall archway resides a true gem of the Library: Gutenberg Bible. It is one of only three complete copies printed on treated calfskin, or vellum, that survived to this day (the other two are in Paris and London). Read the rest of this entry