It was a mix of the old and the new at the grand reopening of the restored Carnegie Library building on Mount Vernon Square in Washington, D.C., on Saturday, May 11, featuring a flagship Apple Store and the DC History Center. The latter will encompass the Kiplinger Research Library, three museum galleries and a museum store, owned and operated by the 125-year-old Historical Society of Washington, D.C.
The Beaux-Arts-style building first opened its doors in 1903. The restoration project, which began in 2016, preserved the building’s historic facades and restored some of its early 20th-Century detailing while maintaining the original footprint of the interior.
The 19,000-square-foot Mount Vernon store is Apple’s second in the District, after the one located on Wisconsin Avenue in Georgetown. It occupies the building’s lower level gallery, plus parts of the main staircase and foyers, including a courtyard area and atrium known as “The Forum,” which will be used as a teaching space.
Founded in 1894, the Historical Society of Washington, D.C., is the city’s only museum and library dedicated to the history of our nation’s capital. The new History Center will showcase rotating exhibitions. The Historical Society will occupy the second floor. The basement floor will also house a photo gallery focusing on the history of the city.
Currently on view is an exhibition titled “The Big Picture,” a “look at 20th-century Washington through spectacular panoramic photography.” Along with thousands of panoramic images, donors Mark and Douglas Segal contributed their father’s massive Cirkut camera to the Society’s collection. Anchoring the exhibition is a wall-size photo taken just before the seventh game of the 1924 World Series, eventually won by the Washington Senators in extra innings over the New York Giants.
The Kiplinger Research Library, due to reopen this summer, will provide access for scholars and residents alike to one of the city’s largest and diverse collections of local historical memorabilia.
The DC History Center will be open Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Sunday, noon to 5 p.m. Admission is free.
During the next six weeks, the StoryMakers Festival will bring together 40 local artists, poets, activists, musicians, photographers, filmmakers, lawmakers and community builders to celebrate storytelling and inspire attendees to tell their own stories.
View Jeff Malet’s photos from the grand reopening of the Carnegie Library by clicking on the photo icons below.