Explore the History of American Architecture at the National Building Museum
15.5 million bricks. More than $800,000. 144 Doric columns. These are a few of the stats that characterize the National Building Museum. The entire building showcases more than 15 million bricks. Some of those bricks were used to construct 72 Doric-style columns and 72 Ionic-style columns. Putting them together cost $886,000 back when the edifice was built to serve as an event venue and home to the Pension Bureau after the Civil War.
Today, the historic building plays host to artifacts that tell the story of architecture in the United States. The permanent collections include everything from photographs to architectural prints and drawings, not to mention actual samples of building materials and gadgets that architects have used over the years. In addition to the permanent collection, the museum welcomes temporary exhibits that cover specific topics in architecture.