The New Nation Birthstone of the Nation Old Patent Office, Washington, D.C.

Old Patent Office, Washington, D.C.

The “Old Patent Office” was started in 1836 and completed in 1867.  Only the south wing is of sandstone, other wings are of white marble.  The south wing facade is patterned after the Parthenon.  In 1964 – 67 this Greek Revival building became home to the National Portrait Gallery and the National Museum of American Art, but it had many prior occupants.  Walt Whitman worked there when it housed the Department of the Interior.  President Abraham Lincoln was there for his second inaugural.  Clara Barton nursed wounded soldiers in the building after the outbreak of the Civil War.  Before the completion of the National Archives, it housed the Declaration of Independence and other historical documents.