May 8, 2015–November 12, 2016

Out of the Ashes: A New Library for Congress and the Nation marks the two-hundredth anniversary of the acquisition of Jefferson’s 6,487-volume library. This acquisition was the foundation of the modern Library of Congress. The Jeffersonian concept of a universal library covering all subjects is the basis of the Library’s comprehensive collecting policies.  Jefferson’s belief that democracy depended on free access to knowledge eventually ensured the availability of the Library’s rich collections not only to Congress, but also to this nation and the world.

Appropriately, Thomas Jefferson's belief that he "could not live without books" is the theme of this year's Library of Congress National Book Festival on September 5, 2015.