View portraits of presidents, first ladies, Civil War generals, suffragists, Native Americans, and artists. At the National Portrait Gallery you can see what the people who made –and are making –history look like. The collection includes literary lions such as Mark Twain and Eudora Welty, and American cultural icons such as Katharine Hepburn and Bob Dylan.
The magnificent old building, constructed between 1836 and 1868, once housed the Patent Office. Two Smithsonian museums– the Portrait Gallery and the American Art Museum have long resided here, but were remarkably renewed when their old home was renovated, in 2006.
The enclosed courtyard/cafe on the first level is a nice place to relax and grab a snack.
Metro: Gallery Place/Chinatown on the Red and Yellow and Green Lines. 7th and F St. exit.