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.

Responding to the Great Depression, 1932

The Great Depression devastated families and shattered lives. By 1933, one in four American workers was unemployed. People were desperate. Representative Wright Patman of Texas, a World War I veteran, introduced a bill for early payment of a $1,000 veterans’ bonus, originally scheduled to be awarded in 1945.

Veterans rallied behind the idea. More than 20,000 of them marched on Washington to show their support. The House passed Patman’s bill. The Senate did not. Standing on the Capitol plaza, Patman personally announced the results to the veterans. Most left Washington—but not all. A few weeks later, the U.S. Army forcibly removed the remaining “Bonus Marchers.” Press photos and news-reels of their eviction turned many against the Hoover administration, which had ordered the action.

"He had just as well try to sweep back the waves of the ocean with a broom."
—Representative Wright Patman of Texas on President Hoover's dilemma with the Bonus Marchers, 1932

History of Congress and the Capitol

The House 1913-1945

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On July 28, 1932, Washington...
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On July 28, 1932, Washington police, along with the U.S. Army, forcibly evicted Bonus Marchers from their campsite along the Anacostia River.

On July 28, 1932, Washington police, along with the U.S. Army, forcibly evicted Bonus Marchers from their campsite along the Anacostia River.

AP/Wide World Photos

On July 28, 1932, Washington police, along with the U.S. Army, forcibly evicted Bonus Marchers from their campsite along the Anacostia River.

On July 28, 1932, Washington police, along with the U.S. Army, forcibly evicted Bonus Marchers from their campsite along the Anacostia River.

AP/Wide World Photos

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