The Treasury Department is one of the oldest government departments. It was among those established when the federal government moved to Washington in 1800. The first Treasury Department building was damaged by fire in 1801 and completely destroyed by the British in 1814, during the War of 1812. A second building was destroyed by fire set by arsonists in 1833. In 1836, Congress authorized the construction of a new, fireproof building, which was finished by 1842. Additional wings to the south, north, and west were added in between 1855 and 1869, completing the building we see today.
Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division. View original.
1836 (current building construction begins)
1869 (current building construction complete)
The building is five stories high and covers five acres of ground. There is a statue of Alexander Hamilton, first Secretary of the Treasury, located on the south, patio facing the Mall. On the north patio is a statue of Albert Gallatin, fourth Secretary of the Treasury and the person who served in that position for the longest period, from 1801 to 1814.