In order to allow for the installation of scaffolding and floor, statuary, and artwork protection in conjunction with the Dome Restoration Project, the Rotunda of the Capitol will be closed from Monday, July 27 through Monday, September 7. While the Rotunda is unavailable for tours, an alternate tour route will be provided. The Capitol Visitor Center is open during the closure of the Rotunda and will offer special activities which do not require advance reservations. You can also download our new U.S. Capitol Rotunda app.

Exhibit Theme

The Monitor and the Merrimac - 1

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Hand-colored lithograph, “Terrific...
Image Caption

Hand-colored lithograph, “Terrific combat between the ‘Monitor’…& ‘Merrimac,’” New York: Currier & Ives, 1862

This depiction of the Monitor (foreground) and the Merrimac shows the Monitor’s low hull and rotating two-gun turret. The previous day, the Merrimac had sunk two wooden Union frigates and captured another, nearly ending the Union blockade of Norfolk, Virginia. Though this duel of ironclads left both ships damaged, the Monitor preserved the blockade.


Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress