I went to Washington D.C. when I was little but I never went to the Library of Congress because one, I couldn’t read, and two I didn’t know as much as I do now about the Library of Congress. Now I know that it’s the research library of the whole United States Congress and it IS open to the public! But only certain parts. It is located in three different buildings in D.C. and it is the largest library in the world in reference to how many shelves and books it has. There are 142 millions books currently in the Libarary of Congress!! That’s amazing! This library really amazed me! It’s so big, but it doesn’t have just books! It has films, soundtracks, pictures and more! It also has an amazing system too! All you have to do is go to the front and request what you want and it will come down on a track! This library has books that all the early presidents wrote! It has writings and notes and letters from George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, you name it they’ve got it!
The library was started when Thomas Jefferson offered to sell his collection of books to Congress as a replacement for the collection destroyed by the British during the War of 1812. Jefferson had collected a huge amount of books over his lifetime that he was very proud of. It was the largest personal collection of books in the United States. Congress purchased Jefferson’s library for $23,950 in 1815, however a fire on Christmas Eve of 1851 destroyed nearly two thirds of the 6,487 volumes Congress had purchased from Jefferson.
This library really amazed me with the detail and the system they had inside. When I went to Washinginton DC I visited the Smithsonian but now I wish I’d gone to see the Library of Congress. Now that I know what a magnificent building the library is, I really regret not getting a first hand view.