2016 Press Releases

The National Archives Celebrates Constitution Day
Press Release · Monday, September 12, 2016

Washington, DC

Constitution Day/Citizenship Day is September 17, 2016

The National Archives celebrates the 229th anniversary of the signing of the U.S. Constitution with free programs and a special Family Day. The National Archives has the original U.S. Constitution on permanent display in the Rotunda for the Charters of Freedom of the National Archives Museum. Museum hours are 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.


  • Learn more about the U.S. Constitution through our public programs, family activities, and online resources.
  • Take the Constitution Challenge Quiz from the National Archives and test how well you know the Constitution of the United States.

Some programs will be webcast live on the National Archives YouTube Channel. The programs are free and open to the public (unless otherwise noted), and will be held in the National Archives Museum in Washington, DC. Attendees should use the Special Events entrance on Constitution Avenue at 7th Street, NW. Metro accessible on the Yellow and Green lines, Archives/Navy Memorial/Penn Quarter station.

Naturalization Ceremony
Wednesday, September 14, at 10 a.m.
Watch a live stream on the National Archives YouTube Channel

Note: The ceremony is open for press coverage, but not members of the public. Press RSVP to public.affairs@nara.gov

The Honorable Beryl A. Howell, United States District Court for the District of Columbia, will preside as 30 petitioners for United States citizenship take the oath of citizenship in front of the original "Charters of Freedom" (The Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution, and the Bill of Rights) in the Rotunda of the National Archives. The ceremony includes a welcome from Archivist of the United States David S. Ferriero and remarks from former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright. This program is presented in partnership with the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia and the Department of Homeland Security U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

PROGRAM: Constitution Day: The 10th Annual State of the Constitution—The Future of Policy Making
Thursday, September 15, at 7 p.m.
William G. McGowan Theater, watch a live stream on the YouTube Channel

Celebrate with the 10th annual State of the Constitution program, which will focus on the future of policy making under our current constitutional system, against the backdrop of national elections. Presented in partnership with the Robert H. Smith Center for the Constitution at James Madison’s Montpelier. Speakers will include Senator Rand Paul and others.

Constitution Day Family Activities
Saturday, September 17, 10 a.m.–4 p.m.
Boeing Learning Center

Celebrate in the home of U.S. Constitution by participating in exciting, hands-on activities taking place in the Boeing Learning Center. Make listening to the Constitution one of the ways you celebrate this year! On Saturday, September 17, 10-year-old Nathan Bond from Fresno, California, will recite the entire U.S. Constitution at 1 p.m. in the Boeing Learning Center. This program is made possible in part by the National Archives Foundation through the support of the John Hancock.

Constitution Story Time in the ReSource Room for Pre-Schoolers and Adults
Wednesday, September 21, 10 a.m.–11 a.m.
Boeing Learning Center

Join us for story time designed for 3- to 5-year-olds and accompanying adults. Children will practice their listening skills, participate in group activities, and create a craft. This month’s theme is the Constitution.

Additional Resources

The National Archives offers numerous opportunities for learning about the Constitution online or on mobile devices.

  • Founders Online ( http://founders.archives.gov/)
    The story of the creation of the Constitution and the founding of the nation can be found in the words of the Founders themselves. The papers of James Madison (often called the father of the Constitution) as well as other Federalist Papers authors Alexander Hamilton and John Jay appear in Founders Online. The voluminous correspondence and other writings—176,000 authoritative transcribed documents and counting—reveal the details in getting the Convention to take place, putting the Constitution together, and ratifying it in the 13 states. Founders Online was created through a cooperative agreement between the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC), the grant-making arm of the National Archives, and The University of Virginia (UVA) Press. Over 3 million visitors have used this free public resource.
  • See online resources for teaching about the Constitution.
  • The DocsTeach Constitution Day web page helps educators locate primary sources from the National Archives that document the creation and structure of our government. DocsTeach is an online teaching tool that helps educators to find and create interactive learning activities.
  • Find eBooks and our iTunes U course on the Constitution, plus other education resources, on our education blog.

The National Archives is an independent Federal agency that preserves and shares with the public records that trace the story of our nation, government, and the American people. From the Declaration of Independence to accounts of ordinary Americans, the holdings of the National Archives directly touch the lives of millions of people. The National Archives carries out its mission through a nationwide network of archives, records centers, and Presidential Libraries, and online at www.archives.gov.

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For press information contact the National Archives Public Affairs staff at 202-357-5300.

Use hashtag #ConstitutionDay to follow the celebration on Twitter.

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This page was last reviewed on October 11, 2016.
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