North side of the Mall at Seventh Street and Constitution Avenue NW; closest Metro Archives-Navy Memorial. April to Labor Day daily 10am9pm; rest of year daily 10am5.30pm. 202/501-5000. Admission free.
National Archives travel, washington Tourist Attractions
As well as a copy of the Magna Carta, dating from 1297, the National Archives hold exhibitions and serve as the official repository of all US national records census data, treaties (including the surrender of Japan in World War II), passport applications, as well as genealogical records most of which are kept in storage. Shaolin Temple
National Archives attractions
On display inside the impressive Neoclassical Greek temple designed by the National Gallery's John Russell Pope are the three short texts upon which the United States is founded: the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. These three National Archives travel original sheets of parchment (the three further pages of the Constitution are not on display), drafted respectively in 1776, 1787 and 1789, are now contained in helium-filled glass cases, which drop underground in case of fire or other threat. You can usually look at them as long as you like, but if there's a crowd you have to shuffle on past.