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

Exploring the World

Next Image Next Image Previous Image Previous Image
Chart of the World Shewing the...
Image Caption

Chart of the World Shewing the Tracks of the U.S. Exploring Expedition, 1838–1842

The U.S. Exploring Expedition surveyed the Pacific Ocean, mapping nearly 300 islands, including the Marianas and Fijis. It explored the coast of Australia, determined that Antarctica was a continent, and charted the northwest coast of North America. The voyage helped establish U.S. claims to the Oregon Territory, Antarctica, and Wake Island in the Pacific.

Records of the Hydrographic Office, National Archives and Records Administration