The cool thing about President’s Day in Washington DC is that the Library of Congress opens it’s doors to the Main Reading Room for photographers and visitors to check out. Usually you can only view this room from above and behind a glass. Cameras are definitely not allowed in this room.
But it’s such a cool event to have the reading room open on President’s day. There was an author reading her poetry and so many people excited running around taking pictures. I happened to take 2 or 3 bookmarks from the library as a souvenir 🙂
My favorite interior in all of DC! The Main Reading Room in the Library of Congress. When you walk in for the first time, you can help but to say “Wow”. With all the beautiful windows and light coming from the ceiling your immediate reaction is just to look up. I remember the first time I visited the main reading room, I just kept on clicking and clicking away on my camera. I was stunned by how amazing it all was, especially all the fine details. Now that I’ve been a couple of times, I love to walk around and just appreciate all that is there.
I love how it’s still a library. The card catalogue is kinda like an ancient artifact all on it’s own. I bet my nephews who are in elementary school right now have no idea what it is or even how to use it. Which is funny and kinda sad all at the same time. Sad only because I remember when I was in elementary school, it was a fun game to learn how to use the card catalogue. All of us would run around the library looking for a particular book. It was a fun race to find the book first. Funny because they probably have a way better computerized system now to located their books and they would consider all of those cards so ancient. Either way, it’s just fun to run my finger tips along the cards and imagine how each one of those little cards represent so much knowledge from one book.
On a side note, I’m sick. So if that was a little rambley for no reason and a little like ‘why are you talking so much about card catalogues’, that’s why. I’m usually not that passionate about library’s organizational systems.
The main reading room in the Library of Congress is only open to the public on two days out of the entire year. Once on President’s Day and the other on Columbus Day. So I took advantage of this 3 day weekend to try to visit it as soon as it opened. I ended up showing up about 30 minutes early and I was shocked to see that there was a huge line from the front door, going all the way down to the steps. I guess I wasn’t the only one who had the idea to show up early.
It was great though. I ended up running into a bunch of friends while I was wandering around the library. More images coming soon.
But this image was captured when I was standing on the second floor. You can’t really tell in this image, but right below is a staircase that leads you to an elevated view of the reading room. This is where you would go to see it on all the other days if you aren’t a student or government official.
My camera settings for this image are F5.6 at 1/25th sec and ISO 200 with my Sony A7II and 16-35mm wide-angle lens.
Yesterday was Presidents Day. So happy belated presidents day to you all. Shout out to big GW!
So not only was the weekend amazing beautiful here in the DC area but one of my most favorite things about President’s day is Library of Congress’ Main Reading Room Open House. Its only open to the public on President’s day and Columbus day so it really is a special treat to go inside. This was probably my third time attending one of these open houses and it NEVER gets old. Not sure what it is, but it’s like you are smarter just by standing there. I mean the very first book ever printed is even on display here. One of my favorite parts is going to the card catalog room and pretend like I’m looking for a book. This room is humungous so I’m not sure how anybody can find anything in there so that’s why I pretend 🙂
This is obviously not an image of the reading room. I have a couple of those you can see here and here that I took from previous visits. This is an image of a hallway. Where it goes, I have no idea. It was blocked off to visitors but I couldn’t help myself. I had to take a few snaps before anyone came and found me. But even from this little hallway, you can tell that this entire space is so beautiful. I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again, this is by far my favorite interior of all of DC. It’s one of those hidden gems that a lot of tourists don’t get to see. Click here if you’d like to see the main room. It’s a stunner. Jaw droppingly amazing. So if you plan to visit at all, definietly try to come on Presidents day or Columbus day. If not, you still won’t be disappointed.