Construction of the U.S. Capitol began in 1793. In November 1800, the U.S. Congress met in the first completed portion, the north wing. In the 1850s, major extensions to the North and South ends of the Capitol were authorized because of the great westward expansion of our nation and the resultant growth of Congress. Since that time, the U.S. Capitol and its stately dome have become international symbols of our representative democracy.
The U.S. Capitol is among the most architecturally impressive and symbolically important buildings in the world. It has housed the meeting chambers of the Senate and the House of Representatives for over two centuries. Begun in 1793, the U.S. Capitol has been built, burnt, rebuilt, extended and restored; today, it stands as a monument not only to its builders but also to the American people and their government.
As the focal point of the government’s Legislative Branch, the U.S. Capitol is the centerpiece of the Capitol Campus, which includes the principal Congressional office buildings and three Library of Congress buildings constructed on Capitol Hill in the 19th and 20th centuries.
In addition to its active use by Congress, the U.S. Capitol is a museum of American art and history. Each year, it is visited by an estimated 3-5 million people from around the world.
A fine example of 19th-century neoclassical architecture, the U.S. Capitol combines function with aesthetics. Its designs derived from ancient Greece and Rome evoke the ideals that guided the nation’s founders as they framed their new republic. As the building was expanded from its original design, harmony with the existing portions was carefully maintained.
Today, the U.S. Capitol covers a ground area of 175,170 square feet, or about 4 acres, and has a floor area of approximately 16-1/2 acres. Its length, from north to south, is 751 feet 4 inches; its greatest width, including approaches, is 350 feet. Its height above the base line on the east front to the top of the Statue of Freedom is 288 feet. The building contains approximately 540 rooms and has 658 windows (108 in the dome alone) and approximately 850 doorways.
According to www.aoc.gov; en.wikipedia. Source of photo: internet