The National Constitution Center , located in Philadelphia , is the first-ever national museum that seeks to expand awareness and understanding of the United States Constitution . Even though it’s only four pages long, the U.S. Constitution is among the most influential and important documents in the history of the world.
Construction started on September 17, 2000 , 213 years after the original Constitution was signed. On July 4, 2003, it was opened and the National Constitution Center joined other notable sites and iconic exhibits in what has been called “America’s most historical square mile” . The National Constitution Center’s location, near the Independence Visitor Center, Independence Hall and the new Liberty Bell Center, is a keen reminder of the important role that Philadelphia played in the birth and early development of the United States Democracy.
The not-profit organization works to increase the understanding and appreciation of the US Constitution featuring more than 100 interactive multimedia exhibits, photographs, writings, films, sculptures, and artifacts. The 160,000-square-foot National Constitution Center explores and explains this amazing document through high-tech exhibits, and interactive displays such as :
- The Kimmel Theater, a 350-seat star-shaped theater features Freedom Rising which explains the history of the U.S. Constitution, and how the definition of “We the People” has expanded over time.
- The main exhibit hall presents a chronology of constitutional history featuring artifacts and original documents, interactive exhibits based on the preamble to the Constitution, and “talk backs” and ways to discuss the Constitution.
- Other exhibits are dedicated to the right to vote and divisive issues such as intelligent design or the death penalty.
- In Signers Hall, where life-size bronze figures of the Constitution’s signers and dissenters are displayed, visitors can choose to sign or dissent.
- Spies, Traitors and Saboteurs: Fear and Freedom in America was created by International Spy Museum featuring artifacts, interactive exhibits and multimedia to illustrate the challenge of securing the country without compromising civil liberties. Visitors can discover stories of espionage, treason and deception in the United States from 1776 to today. The exhibit runs from March 4 – May 30, 2011.
- One of the rare original public copies of the US pConstitution is also on display.
National Constitution Center has quickly become one of Philadephia’s most popular attractions.The museum hosts speakers and events on historic and current constitutional topics. The Center frequently hosts special events with a focus on children that include informative and engaging hands-on activities.
The National Constitution Center is open daily (except Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day) from 9:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Sunday – Friday and 9:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. on Saturday.