Compilation of Weekly Presidential Documents - May 1, 2000 - Proclamation 7296--Bicentennial of the Library of Congress

� Proclamation 7296-Bicentennial of the Library of Congress



� April 21, 2000



� By the President of the United States of America



� A Proclamation



� The Library of Congress is truly America's library. Established on

April 24, 1800, as the Congress prepared to transfer the Federal

Government from Philadelphia to Washington, D.C., it is our

country's oldest Federal cultural institution. With Thomas

Jefferson's private library-acquired in 1815--as its core, the

Library of Congress has reflected from its earliest days the breadth

and variety of Jefferson's interests and his love of democracy,

expanding the store of human knowledge, and helping ensure the free

flow of ideas.



� Two centuries later, the Library's collections remain diverse and

expansive, containing materials on virtually every subject, in

virtually every medium. The Library houses approximately 120 million

items, including more than 18 million books and some of the world's

largest collections of maps, manuscripts, photographs, prints,

newspapers, sound recordings, motion pictures, and other research

materials. The Library also offers wide-ranging services to the

Government and the public, serving simultaneously as a legislative

library and the major research arm of the United States Congress;

the copyright agency of the United States; the world's largest law

library; and a major center for preserving research materials and

for digitizing documents, manuscripts, maps, motion pictures, and

other specialized materials for use on the Internet.



� Today, America's library is also the world's library. An

international resource of unparalleled reach, the Library of

Congress provides services through its 21 reading rooms in 3

buildings on Capitol Hill as well as electronitally through its web

site, which registers more than 4 million transactions each workday

from people around the globe. With its remarkable collections and

resources, the Library has truly fulfilled its stated mission to

make "available and useful . . . and to sustain and preserve a

universal collection of knowledge and creativity for future




� Libraries have always enabled people, in the words of James

Madison, to "arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives."

These words, inscribed at the entrance of the James Madison Memorial

Building of the Library of Congress, are a tribute to the Library's

past and a sustaining goal as it embarks on its third century.



� Now, Therefore, I, William J. Clinton, President of the United

States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the

Constitution and laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim April

24, 2000, as a time to commemorate the Bicentennial of the Library

of Congress. I call upon the people of the United States to observe

this occasion with appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities

that celebrate the many contributions the Library of Congress has

made to strengthening our democracy and our national culture.



� In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-first

day of April, in the year of our Lord two thousand, and of the

Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and




� William J. Clinton



� [Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 8:45 a.m., April

24, 2000]



� NOTE: This proclamation was published in the Federal Register on

April 25. This item was not received in time for publication in the

appropriate issue.




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