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The Capitol, engraving, by Wilfred Jones, 1848

With 31 states represented, Congress was outgrowing the rebuilt and newly expanded Capitol by 1850.

Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress

The Capitol, engraving, by Wilfred Jones, 1848

Images of the Era: 1815-1851

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.