COVID-19 (coronavirus) Update

The Capitol Visitor Center is closed for tours. All tours are cancelled. We regret any inconvenience this may cause you, and we look forward to welcoming you to the Capitol Visitor Center at a future date.

Breaking Exploration Barriers Abroad

Breaking Exploration Barriers Abroad

The Congress shall have Power To...promote the Progress of Science

Article I, Section 8, Constitution of the United States

Congress has supported expeditions to explore land and sea by sending experts in geology, natural history, botany, horticulture, linguistics, and zoology, as well as visual artists, to the ends of the earth. These expeditions’ scientific illustrations, observations, and data established or enhanced the holdings of the Smithsonian Institution, the U.S. Botanic Garden, and other major research institutions. When competing explorers made claims of discoveries, Congress investigated their assertions.