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“The Capture of Tenochtitlán” from Exploring the Early Americas

“The Capture of Tenochtitlán” from Exploring the Early Americas

Visit the Library of Congress and experience the world’s largest collection of culture and creativity like never before. The Thomas Jefferson Building features exhibitions and installations that bring the Library’s unparalleled collections to life. Whether you are in Washington, D.C., or at home, let the Library of Congress take you on a unique and personal journey through history and culture. Millions of items are waiting for you—explore, discover, and be inspired.

Rosa Parks: In Her Own Words

South Gallery, Second Floor, Thomas Jefferson Building
Opened December 5, 2019

Showcases rarely seen materials that offer an intimate view of Rosa Parks and documents her life and activism—creating a rich opportunity for viewers to discover new dimensions to their understanding of this seminal figure. The materials are drawn extensively from the Rosa Parks Collection, a gift to the Library of Congress from the Howard G. Buffett Foundation.

Shall Not Be Denied: Women Fight for the Vote

Southwest Gallery, Second Floor, Thomas Jefferson Building
June 4, 2019–September 2020

Tells the story of the seventy-two-year campaign for women’s suffrage. Considered the largest reform movement in American history, its participants believed that securing the vote was essential to achieving women’s economic, social, and political equality. For years, determined women organized, lobbied, paraded, petitioned, lectured, picketed, and faced imprisonment. Their collective story is one of courage, perseverance, savvy, creativity, and hope that continues to inspire activists today.

Comic Art: 120 Years of Panels and Pages

Graphic Arts Galleries, Ground Floor, Thomas Jefferson Building
September 12, 2019–September 12, 2020

Explore the realm of comic art, where visual and narrative storytelling styles have evolved from panels in early newspapers to contemporary comic images. Through unique original drawings and printed pages, this exhibition features the artistic skills of master artists and emerging talents who have created some of the most famous, funny, and frightening characters to appear in print.

Mapping a Growing Nation: From Independence to Statehood

North Gallery, First Floor, Thomas Jefferson Building
September 1, 2016–Ongoing

Abel Buell’s New and Correct Map of the United States of North America is the first map of the newly independent United States compiled, printed, and published in America by an American. This important early American map is known to exist in only seven copies. Philanthropist David M. Rubenstein has generously placed his copy of the map at the Library.

Hope for America: Performers, Politics and Pop Culture

Bob Hope Gallery of American Entertainment, Ground Floor, Thomas Jefferson Building
June 11, 2010–Ongoing

Politicians and entertainers have dominated public life in America for much of the twentieth century. Members of both professions have found their worlds increasingly entangled. The exhibition explores some of these entanglements, focusing on the careers of Bob Hope and other entertainers who were involved in the political climate of their times. Explore artifacts that represent an array of viewpoints on the interplay of politics and entertainment in American public life.

Thomas Jefferson's Library

Southwest Pavilion, Second Floor, Thomas Jefferson Building
April 11, 2008–Ongoing

Take a trip through a re-created version of Jefferson’s library, which assembles 6,487 volumes that founded the Library of Congress, and learn how one of America’s greatest thinkers was inspired through the world of books.

Exploring the Early Americas

Northwest Gallery, Second Floor, Thomas Jefferson Building
December 12, 2007–Ongoing

Examine indigenous cultures, the drama of the encounters between Native Americans and Europeans, and the resulting changes caused by the meeting of the two worlds, which features selections from the Jay I. Kislak Collection. This exhibit also features Martin Waldseemüller’s 1507 map of the world—the first on which the word “America” appears.

Herblock Gallery

Graphic Arts Galleries, Ground Floor, Thomas Jefferson Building
March 18, 2011–Ongoing

The Herblock Gallery celebrates the work of editorial cartoonist Herbert L. Block—better known as "Herblock"—with an ongoing display of ten original drawings, to change every six months, drawn from the Library's extensive Herbert L. Block Collection.

Swann Gallery

Graphic Arts Galleries, Ground Floor, Thomas Jefferson Building
March 18, 2011–Ongoing

The Swann Gallery introduces visitors to the fascinating world of caricatures, political cartoons, comics, animation art, graphic novels and illustrations. A permanent memorial exhibition features fifteen facsimiles of treasured cartoons from the Swann and other cartoon collections, which represent the broad range of holdings in the Library of Congress.

Here to Stay: The Legacy of George and Ira Gershwin

Gershwin Gallery, Ground Floor, Thomas Jefferson Building
December 11, 2008–Ongoing

Experience the glamour and sophistication of the 1920s and 1930s in this permanent tribute to the brothers who helped provide a musical background to the period. The exhibition contains a wealth of materials that provide insight into their careers and personalities, including manuscript and printed music, lyric sheets and librettos, personal and business correspondence, photographs, paintings, and drawings, all from the Gershwin Collection in the Music Division of the Library of Congress, the world's preeminent resource for materials about the Gershwins.

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