ALERT: Dome Restoration Project Necessitates Rotunda Closure April 12 through April 28.
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This is the story of one of the world's great experiments in government by the people.
For more than two centuries, a new Congress has convened every two years following elections that determine all the seats in the House and one-third of those in the Senate. While the individuals change, the institution has endured-through civil and world wars, waves of immigration and great migrations, and continuous social and technological change.
Following the War of 1812, a stronger sense of national unity emerged in the United States. As America expanded westward, however, attempts to spread slavery into those new territories seriously divided the nation.