The Library of Congress
- Learn what happened today in history.
- Read about visiting the Library.
- Ask a librarian for help.
The Library of Congress is more than just the research arm of the U.S. Congress, providing unbiased information on any subject to members of the Senate and the House of Representatives. In fact, as the national library of the United States, this enormous archive houses what it says is "the world's most comprehensive record of human creativity and knowledge" - and these rich resources are available to the public.
A perfect copy of the Gutenberg Bible is here; so is Thomas Jefferson's personal library, the largest rare-book collection in North America, the oldest example of printing in the world, and uncountable other cultural and historical treasures. The Library of Congress holds an astonishing 134 million items from all over the world, including books, recordings, photos, maps, prints, and much more.
But to benefit from the library, you don't need to go to Capitol Hill in person. The Library's Web site offers a wealth of free online tools to help researchers everywhere find what they need. For example, you can access the entire card catalog over the Web. The National Digital Library Program is making some American collections easily available to the public online. The THOMAS database provides the public with free legislative information about Congress, searchable over the Internet. And the Ask a Librarian feature provides basic free research assistance to the public via e-mail.
Click here to visit loc.gov.