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The Capitol's Cornerstone

Ceremonies to commemorate the construction of a great public building can be traced to the ancient world and were particularly important to builders in the Middle Ages. The laying of a cornerstone is a symbolic act that celebrates humanity’s need to build and be remembered. On September 18, 1793, President George Washington laid the Capitol’s cornerstone in a ceremony attended by representatives of Masonic lodges from Maryland and Virginia, an artillery company, the city commissioners, and local residents.

1 Image George Washington's Seal, gold and carnelian, 1794 View All Images
4 Images Masonic Gavel, Trowel and Triangle, 1793 View All Images