Digital Repository

Lacour, Federal Hall, The Seat of Congress, 1790

Washington, D.C. was not yet built when Congress met for the first time under America's new constitution. New York City's Federal Hall, previously known as New York City Hall, instead served as the nation's first capitol building before the nation's capital moved to Philadelphia and, finally in 1800, Washington, D.C. This 1790 engraving by Peter Lacour depicts George Washington's inauguration as President at Federal Hall on April 30, 1789.

Peter Lacour, Washington’s inauguration portrayed in Federal Hall, The Seat of Congress, printed by A. Doolittle, 1790. Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress.