Due to a special event, on Wednesday, July 8, there will be no tours of the U.S. Capitol after 11 a.m. Emancipation Hall and Exhibition Hall in the Capitol Visitor Center will be unavailable all day. While reservations prior to 11 a.m. will be honored, same-day passes will not be available. The Capitol Visitor Center will close at noon except for individuals on official business and those going to the House and Senate Galleries.

Exhibit Theme

Ensuring the Public’s Right to Know

Next Image Next Image Previous Image Previous Image
A Bill Entitled “An act to provide...
Image Caption

A Bill Entitled “An act to provide for the safe keeping of the Acts, Records, and Seal of the United States,” signed into law September 15, 1789

Only months after convening, the First Congress made the secretary of state responsible for the safekeeping of and access to the government’s official records. Congress transferred this authority to the National Archives when it was established in 1934.

Records of the U.S. Senate, National Archives and Records Administration