LIBRARY OF CONGRESS, PACKARD CAMPUS
Set on a 45-acre campus in Culpeper, Virginia, the Library of Congress’s Packard Campus of the National Audio-Visual Conservation Center is the first centralized facility in America especially designed for the acquisition, cataloging, storage and preservation of the nation’s collection of moving images and recorded sounds. It was created through a unique partnership between the Packard Humanities Institute, the U.S. Congress, the Library of Congress and the Architect of the Capitol.
The facility, with a cost of more than $150 million, represents the largest-ever private gift to the U.S. legislative branch of government and one of the largest ever to the federal government. This unique public-private partnership is making it possible for the Library of Congress to sustain an audio-visual legacy that might otherwise be lost to the ravages of time or indifference.
The Packard Campus contains more than 100 miles of shelving for collections storage, 35 climate controlled vaults for sound recording, safety film, and videotape, 124 individual vaults for flammable nitrate film—and is outfitted to preserve and reformat all audiovisual media formats (including obsolete formats dating back to the 19th Century) and their long-term safekeeping in a petabyte-level digital storage archive.
The facility is home to more than 1.4 million film, television and video items ranging from motion pictures made in the 1890s to today’s TV programs. The site also holds 3.5 million recordings - the nation’s largest public collection of sound recordings containing music, spoken word and radio broadcasts. The collection includes an additional 2.4 million supporting scripts, posters, photos and other material.
The Packard Campus Theater is a 205 seat art deco theater that regularly presents film screenings and live events such as music concerts and radio reenactments. Admission to the events are always free and schedules of upcoming events are posted on the Library’s website, printed in local newspapers, and posted throughout the Culpeper area.