The Nation's Library: The Library of Congress Washington, D.C. [First ed.] 9781857592351

Scala Books has collaborated with the Library of Congress in the publication of this celebratory guide to one of the wor

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The Nation's Library: The Library of Congress Washington, D.C. [First ed.]
 9781857592351

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Table of contents :
Front Cover
Front Flap
Half Title Page
Full Title Page
lSBN: 1-85759-235-2
Contents
Foreword
The Library of Congress: A Brief History
"Building" the World's Largest Library
The Thomas Jefferson Building
View from the Street
The Great Hall
Second-Floor Corridors and Galleries
Visitors' Gallery
The Main Reading Room
The General Collections
African and Middle Eastern Division
American Folklife Center
Asian Division
European Division
Hispanic Division
Local History and Genealogy Division
Rare Book and Special Collections Division
The John Adams Building
Science, Technology and Business Division
The James Madison Memorial Building
Geography and Map Division
Law Library
Manuscript Division
Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division
Music Division / Performing Arts Reading Room
Newspaper and Current Periodicals Reading Roorn / Serial and Government Publications Division
Prints and Photographs Division
Services to Congress and Libraries
Cataloging Distribution Service
Congressional Research Service
Federal Library & Information Center Committee
Preservation and Conservation
Public Programs and Services
The Center for the Book
Children's Literature Center
Concerts and Broadcasts
Exhibitions
Film Showings
National Library Sevice for the Blind and Physically Handicapped
Office of Scholarly Programs
Library of Congress Photoduplication Service
Poetry and Literature Center
Public Affairs Office
Publications
Reference Referral Service
The United States Copyright Office
Visitors' Services
Preserving the Past, Informing the Future: The Library of Congress in the Digital Age
The National Digital Library Program
The Library of Congress On-Line Resources
Appendix I Using the Library of Congress
Appendix II Librarians of Congress
Appendix III Consultants in Poetry / Poets Laureate
Appendix IV Read More About the Library of Congress and its Collections
Index
Schematic Diagram of the Thomas Jefferson Building
THE AUTHORS
OTHER SCALA TITLES AVAI LABLE

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TI1t· Libra[) of Congress, founded in 1800, began as a purdy congressional library: but over the past two centuries, as the l nitl'd States itself has grown and assu1ned an important role an1ong the con1n1unity of nations, the Library's collections and services have expanded as well. Today it is the world's largest library. sc>rving not only the- United States Congress, but also other libraric-s and individual researchers-both in the- United States and around the world.

Tht' Nution·s Library, a collaboration between the Library and Scala Publishers, is a celebration of, and a guide to this complex institution-one of the greatest cultural and intellectual resources in the world. Succinct and informative text, punctuated by lavish color illustrations, leads the reader through the Library's history and present-day organization and services. Sumptuous photographs of the Library's three buildings on Washington's Capitol Hill-including the original Library building, an architectural treasure opened in 1897-are intetspersed with views of some of the eclectic treasures housed in this repository of international culture. These include founding documents of the American Republic, Japanese fine prints, Arabic calligraphy, rare illustrated books, maps, music and musical instruments, posters, comic books, architectural drawings, hallmark doc­ urnents in the history of science, and historic photographs. For those who will visit the Library in person or via the Internet, the book also includes information on the subject areas in each of the Library's 22 reading rooms, hours of operation, general procedures for conducting research in the Library, and on the ever-expanding Library of Congress Web Site. The Nation's Library thus 1nakes the Library's storehouse of knowledge immediate and accessible to people around the world.

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THE NATION'S LIBRARY

The Library of Congress, Washington, D. C.

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·· THE NATION'S LIBRARY

The Library of Congress, Washington, D. C. Alan Bisbort and Linda Barrett Osborne

Library of Congress in association with Scala Publishers

Copyright © 2000 Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. First published in 2000 by Scala Publishers Ltd 143-149 Great Portland Street London \J.'lN 5FB Published and distributed outside The Library of Congress in the USA and Canada by Antique Collectors' Club Limited Market Street Industrial Park Wappingers' Falls NY

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Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data: Library of Congress. The Nation's Library: the Library of Congress. Washington, D.C./ Alan Bisbort and Linda Barrett Osborne. p. cm. Includes index. lSBN 1-85759-235-2 (alk. paper) 1. Library of Congress. I. Bisbort, Alan, 1953- II. Osborne, Linda Barrett, 1949- III. Title. z733-u6 145 2000 [2663] 027.573-dc2r lSBN:

All rights reserved No part of the contents of this book may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without the written permission of the Library of Congress and Scala Publishers Ltd. Coordinated by W. Ralph Eubanks and Margaret E. Wagner Edited by Margaret E. Wagner and Helena Drysdale Designed by Anikst Design and Thanh Tung Uong Produced by Scala Publishers Ltd Printed and bound by Editoriale Lloyd, Trieste, Italy Front cover: The dome of the Thomas Jefferson building, Library of Congress, capped by the torch of knowledge, shares the Capitol Hill skyline with the white dome of the United States Capitol. Photograph by Carol Highsmith. Inside front cover: Map of Capitol Hill, showing the three Library of Congress buildings. Back cover: A staircase in the Great Hall, Thomas Jefferson Building. Photograph by Anne Day. Inside back cover: Schematic diagram of the Thomas Jefferson Building, by Doug Stern.

1-85759-235-2

All measurements are in inches followed by centimeters; Height precedes width precedes depth.

Frontispiece: The Commemorative Arch in the Great Hall, Thomas Jefferson Building (detail). Photograph by Anne Day.

For Lois Korzendorfer (1948-2000 ). referrnce librarian, Library of Congress

Contents

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Foreword

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James H� Billington, The Librarian of Congress

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The Library of Congress: A Brief History

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'fhe Thomas Jefferson Building

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View from the Street

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The Great Hall

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Second-Floor Corridors and Galleries

46

The Visitors' Gallery

47

The Main Reading Room

49

The General Collections

49

African and Middle Eastern Division

51

American Folklife Center

55

Asian Division

56

European Division

59

Hispanic Division

61

Local History and Genealogy Division

62

Rare Book and Special Collections Division

66

69

The John Adams Building

Science, Technology, and Business Divisi