Establishing a Library for Congress - 2
The Library of Congress was established in the act that provided for relocating the federal government to Washington, D.C. That act also authorized purchasing $5,000 worth of books “. . . as necessary for the use of Congress.” Most of these books were destroyed when British troops burned the Capitol in 1814. To replenish its holdings, Thomas Jefferson sold to the government his personal library of more than 6,000 volumes. The Library of Congress was housed in the Capitol until 1897, when the Library moved to its own building.