Five fun facts you may not know about the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C.

The Library of Congress, known by the acronyms LOC or Loc, is the de facto national library of the United States of America. With over 158 million documents it is the largest library in the world.

Preserved in the building named after Thomas Jefferson, considered one of the finest examples of the American Renaissance, are countless rare books from North America, as well as a collection that includes texts in as many as 470 different languages.

Although it is world-renowned, partly due to the visual popularity given to it by Hollywood films over the past decades, there are still many curiosities and mysteries about this library that the general public may not know.

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Five little-known facts about the Library of Congress
La Bibliothèque du Congrès, connue sous les acronymes LOC ou Loc, est la bibliothèque nationale de facto des États-Unis d'Amérique. Avec plus de 158 millions de documents, c'est la plus grande bibliothèque du monde. Dans le bâtiment qui porte le nom de Thomas Jefferson, considéré comme l'un des plus beaux exemples de la Renaissance américaine, sont conservés d'innombrables livres rares d'Amérique du Nord, ainsi qu'une collection qui comprend des textes dans pas moins de 470 langues différentes. Bien qu'elle soit mondialement connue, en partie grâce à la popularité visuelle que lui ont conférée les films hollywoodiens au cours des dernières décennies, cette bibliothèque recèle encore de nombreuses curiosités et de nombreux mystères que le grand public ne connaît peut-être pas.
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A Gutenberg Bible is preserved inside.
The library is most famous for the priceless works that are preserved inside. One of the most valuable and incredibly well-preserved pieces is the Gutenberg Bible (42-line Bible from 1455), or what is considered the first printed book in the history of mankind, made in the 15th century through the technique of movable type printing.
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The current library came into being because of Jefferson's books
Inaugurated in 1800, in 1814 the British started a fire and burned most of the books contained within the library. After only a month, retired President Thomas Jefferson offered his own personal library as a replacement (one of the most comprehensive libraries in the United States at the time). Congress purchased all of Jefferson's heavily indebted books for $23,950, and from that initial group, the catalogue that exists today was built.
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Every copy of what is published in the U.S.
The library has a unique retention policy for the registration of US publications. It receives a copy of every book, magazine, newspaper and other publication produced in the United States. This ensures that the library has an extensive collection of US publications. Although everything goes through the library, not every single publication is stored there.
Di Carol M. Highsmith - Opera propria, CC BY-SA 3.0,
All U.S. laws are also preserved
The Library of Congress also ensures the preservation of an online archive of the acts of the United States Congress, including the texts of laws, the Congressional Record, the summary and status of laws, the Congressional Record Index and the United States Constitution.
Di Diliff - Opera propria, CC BY-SA 3.0,
An annual award organized by the library
The status of the US Library of Congress is so important that it also organises a literary award every year. Starting in 2008, in fact, the current librarian (i.e. the current administrator) presents the Library of Congress Award for Lifetime Achievement in American Fiction. This award is given to American-born writers, all writing fiction, whose work "tells something new about the American experience".
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