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A building, or edifice, is a structure with a roof and walls standing more or less permanently in one place, such as a house or factory. Buildings come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and functions, and have been adapted throughout history for a wide number of factors, from building materials available, to weather conditions, land prices, ground conditions, specific uses, and aesthetic reasons. To better understand the term building compare the list of nonbuilding structures.

Buildings serve several societal needs – primarily as shelter from weather, security, living space, privacy, to store belongings, and to comfortably live and work. A building as a shelter represents a physical division of the human habitat (a place of comfort and safety) and the outside (a place that at times may be harsh and harmful).

Ever since the first cave paintings, buildings have also become objects or canvasses of much artistic expression. In recent years, interest in sustainable planning and building practices has also become an intentional part of the design process of many new buildings.

Building Media

16,014 media by topicpage 1 of 161
The upper reaches of Frost Bank Tower, a prominent Austin, Texas, skyscraper

The upper reaches of Frost Bank Tower, a prominent Austin, Texas, skys...

Title, date, and keywords based on information provided by the photographer. The 33-story building was developed by Cousins Properties from November 2001 to December 2003. It was the first high- rise building t... more

Steam locomotives in the roundhouse of the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Scenic Railroad in Durango, Colorado

Steam locomotives in the roundhouse of the Durango & Silverton Narrow ...

Title, date and keywords based on information provided by the photographer. Credit line: Gates Frontiers Fund Colorado Collection within the Carol M. Highsmith Archive, Library of Congress, Prints and Photograp... more

Stained glass in Neiman Marcus store, San Francisco, California

Stained glass in Neiman Marcus store, San Francisco, California

Title, date, and keywords provided by the photographer. This stain glass in Neiman Marcus on Union Square, was once in The City of Paris store. The architectural centerpiece of the building is the original rotu... more

Sculpture "Eagle; Justice Above All Else" at Jacob K. Javitz Federal Building, New York, New York

Sculpture "Eagle; Justice Above All Else" at Jacob K. Javitz Federal B...

Artist: Theodore Roszak, 1970. Bronze. Photographed as part of an assignment for the General Services Administration. Title information, date, and subject note provided by the photographer. Credit line: Photogr... more

[Holstengate, Lubeck, Germany]

[Holstengate, Lubeck, Germany]

Title from the Detroit Publishing Co., catalogue J foreign section. Detroit, Mich. : Detroit Photographic Company, 1905. Print no. "1879". Forms part of: Views of Germany in the Photochrom print collection.

Irving Trust Bldg., 1 Wall St.

Irving Trust Bldg., 1 Wall St.

JO8624 U.S. Copyright Office. No. C 20599. Copyright by Irving Underhill, Inc., N.Y.C.

Historic Electric City sign, restored in 2008, shines again. Scranton, Pennsylvania

Historic Electric City sign, restored in 2008, shines again. Scranton,...

Title, date, and subjects provided by the photographer. Credit line: Carol M. Highsmith's America, Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division. Gift and purchase ; Carol M. Highsmith; 2009; (DLC/PP-201... more

Dodge Brothers Motor Car Company Plant, Between Joseph Campau & Conant Avenues, Hamtramck, Wayne County, MI

Dodge Brothers Motor Car Company Plant, Between Joseph Campau & Conant...

Significance: It served as the major manufacturing and assembly plant for the Dodge automobile and is the last large reinforced concrete automobile plant left in the Detroit area. The Dodge factory led to the ... more

[Frontispiece and title page for Mechanick exercises by Joseph Moxon, showing framing for a wooden building]

[Frontispiece and title page for Mechanick exercises by Joseph Moxon, ...

Title devised by Library staff. Illus. in: Mechanick exercises : or, the doctrine of handy-works / by Joseph Moxon. London : Printed and sold by J. Moxon, 1694, frontispiece and title page. Published in: The tr... more

View of the federal ediface in New York

View of the federal ediface in New York

Print shows exterior view of Federal Hall, designated the site of the federal government in 1788, New York City, New York. Title from item. Illus. in: The Columbian magazine, or, Monthly miscellany. Philadelphi... more

View of the court house in Salem Massachusetts / W. Gray, del. ; engraved by S. Hill.

View of the court house in Salem Massachusetts / W. Gray, del. ; engra...

Title from item. Illus. in: The Massachusetts magazine, or, Monthly museum of knowledge and rational entertainment. Boston, Mass. : Isaiah Thomas and Ebenezer T. Andrews, vol. II, no. III, 1790 (March), frontis... more

[Front facade and floor plan for 18th century building]

[Front facade and floor plan for 18th century building]

Title devised by Library staff. Illus. in: The country builder's assistant : containing a collection of new designs of carpentry and architecture ... / by Asher Benjamin. Printed at Greenfield, Massachusetts : ... more

[Man, boy, and another person at doorsteps of bldg.; a cat]

[Man, boy, and another person at doorsteps of bldg.; a cat]

Illus. in: Dick Whittington and his Cat, 1814, p. 4-5. Reference copy may be in LOT 4442. This record contains unverified, old data from caption card. Caption card tracings: Cats; Literature, Children's.

Crypt of the Holy Sepulchre Jerusalem

Crypt of the Holy Sepulchre Jerusalem

[Shows the Chapel of St. Helena] Illus. in: The Holy Land, Syria, Idumea, Arabia, Egypt and Nubia / from drawings made on the spot by David Roberts ... ; lithographed by Louis Haghe. London : F.G. Moon, 1842-18... more

Micklegate Bar, York

Micklegate Bar, York

Title from item.

Houses of Parliament / Pearson sc.

Houses of Parliament / Pearson sc.

Print shows Palace of Westminster, meeting place of the House of Commons and the House of Lords, on the banks of the Thames River. Title from item. In album: [Album of ephemera and Civil War era photographs; ph... more

View of west end of building

View of west end of building

Photograph shows exterior view of Crystal Palace building. Salted paper photoprint by Claude-Marie Ferrier or Hugh Owen. Illus. in: Reports by the Juries, London, Spicer Brothers, 1852, v. 2 frontis.

Washington Aqueduct, details of masonry, traverse section

Washington Aqueduct, details of masonry, traverse section

Drawing. This record contains unverified data from caption card.

[The Library of Congress in the U.S. Capitol Building]

[The Library of Congress in the U.S. Capitol Building]

Photograph of an engraving. Title and date from Ten First Street, Southeast: Congress Builds a Library, 1886-1897 / Helen-Anne Hilker. Washington, DC: Library of Congress, 1980, p. 60, no. 8.

Elevation of dome of U.S. Capitol

Elevation of dome of U.S. Capitol

In album: Benjamin Brown French "Photographs," p. 13. Title from item. No. 1902. Reference copy in LOT 12251, v. 1. Original in PR 12 LOT 12251.

[White House conservatory]

[White House conservatory]

Photograph shows conservatory attached to the White House. Title devised by Library staff. Blind stamp on mount: Reynolds's Bristolboard. Attributed to Walker based on date, subject matter, and size of print. P... more

[Construction of the south wing of the Treasury building]

[Construction of the south wing of the Treasury building]

Photograph shows construction of the south wing of the Treasury building from the east side. Title from item. Blind stamp on mount: Reynolds's Bristolboard. Attributed to Walker based on date, subject matter, a... more

[U.S. Department of Interior Building]

[U.S. Department of Interior Building]

Photo shows a U.S. government building at 7th and F streets, NW, in Washington, DC, while it was occupied by the Department of the Interior. Later known as the Patent Office Building. In album: Benjamin Brown F... more

[Facade of the United States Treasury Building, Washington, D.C., with a carriage on street near building]

[Facade of the United States Treasury Building, Washington, D.C., with...

Illus. in: Views of the Treasury Building, plate 33. Microfilm in LOT 12364.

Elevation of dome of U.S. Capitol

Elevation of dome of U.S. Capitol

Architect of the Capitol item number: 003150.1290, Walter, no. 1902. Title from item.

Granada. Interior de la galeria y del templete poniente del Patio de los Leones (Alhambra) / /J. Laurent.

Granada. Interior de la galeria y del templete poniente del Patio de l...

View of the Lion Fountain from one of the galleries on the Court of Lions.

Alger. Galerie d'une maison Mauresque / ND. Phot.

Alger. Galerie d'une maison Mauresque / ND. Phot.

Woman standing in gallery overlooking courtyard, Algiers, Algeria. Title from item. No. 227.

Vienna, the Arsenal

Vienna, the Arsenal

Front left view of Arsenal Museum and grounds. In album: Genoa, Pisa, Nice, Avignon, Parma, Milan, Verona, Vienna, p. 135. No. 263.

Madrid. Fachada meridional del Museo con la estatua de Murillo / J. Laurent. Madrid.

Madrid. Fachada meridional del Museo con la estatua de Murillo / J. La...

South facade of Prado Museum with statue of Murillo on right. In album: Spain, p. 9. No. 1026.

Vienna. The Belvidere [i.e., Belvedere]

Vienna. The Belvidere [i.e., Belvedere]

In album: Genoa, Pisa, Nice, Avignon, Parma, Milan, Verona, Vienna, p. 134. No. 261.

Verona. Porch of cathedral

Verona. Porch of cathedral

In album: Genoa, Pisa, Nice, Avignon, Parma, Milan, Verona, Vienna, p. 123. No. 239.

Abp's Palace, Algiers

Abp's Palace, Algiers

Courtyard of the Archbishop's residence, Algiers, Algeria. Title from item. On mount verso: 3730.

Granada. Testero del primer cenador en el Patio de los Leones (Alhambra) / J. Laurent. Madrid.

Granada. Testero del primer cenador en el Patio de los Leones (Alhambr...

Entrance to the primary pavilion off the Lion Court. In album: Spain, p. 40. No. 229.

Alger. Intérieur de la Mosquée el-Djedid / ND. Phot.

Alger. Intérieur de la Mosquée el-Djedid / ND. Phot.

Interior view of the New Mosque (Jamaa el-Jedid), Algiers, Algeria.

Vienna. Palace of Schönbrun[n]. Belvidere [i.e. Gloriette]

Vienna. Palace of Schönbrun[n]. Belvidere [i.e. Gloriette]

View of Gloriette, a colonnade in the gardens of Schönbrunn. In album: Genoa, Pisa, Nice, Avignon, Parma, Milan, Verona, Vienna, p. 143, back. No. 280.

New York Historical Society, New York, New York. Exterior

New York Historical Society, New York, New York. Exterior

Architectural drawing shows design for New York Historical Society building as perspective projection. Title devised by Library staff. Gift; American Institute of Architects / American Architectural Foundation;... more

Trieste. Palace of Miramar

Trieste. Palace of Miramar

In album: Genoa, Pisa, Nice, Avignon, Parma, Milan, Verona, Vienna, p. 126. No. 245.

Verona. Tombs of the Scaligers

Verona. Tombs of the Scaligers

In album: Genoa, Pisa, Nice, Avignon, Parma, Milan, Verona, Vienna, p. 124, back. No. 242.

[A hoist for ship building]

[A hoist for ship building]

Steamship in background. Title devised. Gift, J.P. Morgan, 1919 (DLC/PP-1919:R1.2.631) Forms part of: Morgan collection of Civil War drawings.

Edinburgh. Castle

Edinburgh. Castle

Rear view of Edinburgh Castle as seen from the street. In album: Prague, Innsbruck, Munich, Nuremberg, Dresden, Berlin, Hombourg, Edinburgh, opposite p. 196. No. 372.

Cairo. Street view

Cairo. Street view

In album: Jerusalem, Alexandria, Cairo, Rome, no. 137.

Ruins on Carey Street, Richmond, Va.

Ruins on Carey Street, Richmond, Va.

No. 4438. Title from item. Gift; Col. Godwin Ordway; 1948.

[Workers constructing a wood building]

[Workers constructing a wood building]

Title devised by Library staff.

Charleston, South Carolina: The orphan asylum, [facade]

Charleston, South Carolina: The orphan asylum, [facade]

Civil War Photograph Collection (Library of Congress). No. 3423.

[A camp made up of small cabins that surround a large building]

[A camp made up of small cabins that surround a large building]

No. 4513. Title devised by library staff. Mounted with five other photographs with general caption: Views at Chattanooga, Tennessee. 18th Ohio Infantry. 15th Pennsylvania Cavalry. Photograph is half stereograph... more

[Civil War envelope for 50th New York Engineer Regiment showing armory building]

[Civil War envelope for 50th New York Engineer Regiment showing armory...

Title devised by Library staff. Addressed to Mr. Joe Nixson, Elmira, Chemung Co., N.Y.; postmarked Dec. 21, Washington, D.C.; bears 3 cent stamp. Notation on front: Ans. Dec. 27, 1863. Gift; Tom Liljenquist; 20... more

[Side view of building]

[Side view of building]

Drawing shows the side view of a building, perhaps a Washington, DC church. Signed lower left: Pa. P. Gift, Estate of Paul J. Pelz, 1920, (DLC/PP-1926:R46106).

Residence of R.B. Woodward, San Francisco--interior of Conservatory

Residence of R.B. Woodward, San Francisco--interior of Conservatory

The Library holds only one photo from a pair published as a stereographic view. Gems of California scenery, no. 422. LOT subdivision subject: San Francisco Private Residences. This record contains unverified ol... more

Residence of R.B. Woodward, San Francisco--The Conservatory

Residence of R.B. Woodward, San Francisco--The Conservatory

The Library holds only one photo from a pair published as a stereographic view. Gems of California scenery, no. 420. LOT subdivision subject: San Francisco Private Residences. This record contains unverified ol... more

K Street, Sacramento, from Kohn's Bldg.

K Street, Sacramento, from Kohn's Bldg.

The Library holds only one photo from a pair published as a stereographic view. Gems of California scenery, no. 1078. LOT subdivision subject: Sacramento. This record contains unverified old data from caption card.

Ladies' Protection and Relief Society Bldg., Franklin St., San Francisco

Ladies' Protection and Relief Society Bldg., Franklin St., San Francis...

The Library holds only one photo from a pair published as a stereographic view. Gems of California scenery, no. 192. LOT subdivision subject: San Francisco Public Buildings (Schools, Hospitals, etc.). This reco... more

Thomas Houseworth & Co. Opticians Bldg., near Yosemite Valley in California

Thomas Houseworth & Co. Opticians Bldg., near Yosemite Valley in Calif...

The Library holds only one photo from a pair published as a stereographic view. Gems of California scenery, no. 101. LOT subdivision subject: San Francisco Lawrence and Houseworth's store. This record contains ... more

Sacramento City from the new Capitol Bldg. looking North-- 9th Street at the right.

Sacramento City from the new Capitol Bldg. looking North-- 9th Street ...

The Library holds only one photo from a pair published as a stereographic view. Gems of California scenery, no. 1209. LOT subdivision subject: Sacramento. This record contains unverified old data from caption card.

Thébes. 1er Pylône du grand temple / Bonfils.

Thébes. 1er Pylône du grand temple / Bonfils.

Section of bas-relief pylon of the Ramesseum, the mortuary temple of Ramses II. Title from item. No. 139.

Palmyre. Vue latérale du temple du Soleil / Bonfils.

Palmyre. Vue latérale du temple du Soleil / Bonfils.

Remains of Temple of the Sun in Palmyra, Syria.

[Group of Winnebago Indians seated on bench outside of building]
Drake's Block, cor. Wabash Ave. and Washington St.

Drake's Block, cor. Wabash Ave. and Washington St.

Photo shows the ruins of the Drake Block in Chicago, which was destroyed by fire in September 1870 (before the Great Chicago Fire of 1871). Stereo by Copelin & Melander. No. 177, printed on front. No. 63, writ... more

Sultan Ahmed vue intérieure / M. Iranian.

Sultan Ahmed vue intérieure / M. Iranian.

Interior view of the Sultanahmet Camii (mosque), Istanbul. Title from item. Also known as the Blue Mosque. No. 115.

[Ruins of Smith & Nixon's Building on LaSalle St., Chicago, after the great fire of Oct. 1871]

[Ruins of Smith & Nixon's Building on LaSalle St., Chicago, after the ...

Stereo by J.H. Abbott. This record contains unverified, old data from caption card. Caption card tracings: Photog. Index; Ill. Chicago Bldgs.; Ill. Chicago Hist.; Shelf.

Architectural drawing for the Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. Floor plan

Architectural drawing for the Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. Fl...

Competition drawing showing library as plan. UNIT title devised. Library of Congress design competition proposal no. 11 (from Library of Congress Archives, Records of the Library of Congress, Buildings and Grou... more

[Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. Side elevation]
Machinery Hall from Finance Bldg.

Machinery Hall from Finance Bldg.

International exhibition, 1876, Philadelphia. Stereo by Centennial Photograph Co. No. 2902. This record contains unverified data from caption card. Caption card tracings: Geogr.; Exh.

[Centennial Exhibition, Phila. 1876]: Group of historic relics, Govt. bldg. - 2555

[Centennial Exhibition, Phila. 1876]: Group of historic relics, Govt. ...

Stereo copyrighted by Centennial Photo. Co. This record contains unverified, old data from caption card. Caption card tracings: Exhibitions; Sculpture; Shelf.

International Exhibition, Phila., Pa.: Japanese Mirror and Bronzes, Main Bldg.

International Exhibition, Phila., Pa.: Japanese Mirror and Bronzes, Ma...

Stereo copyrighted by the Centennial Photo. Co. No. 2017. This record contains unverified, old data from caption card. Caption card tracings: Machinery; Japan Misc.; Shelf.

Temp. Custom House, Main Exh. Bldg

Temp. Custom House, Main Exh. Bldg

Checking, moving and unpacking large crates. Wood engraved scene of the preparation of Phila. Centennial Expo. Illus. in: Harper's Weekly, 1876 April 15, p. 309. Reference copy may be in LOT 4435A. This record ... more

U.S. Chemical Department exhibit in Main Bldg., International Exhibition, Phila., Pa.

U.S. Chemical Department exhibit in Main Bldg., International Exhibiti...

Stereo copyrighted by the Centennial Photographic Co. No. 2091. This record contains unverified, old data from caption card. Caption card tracings: Chemistry; Exhibitions 1876; Shelf. Philadelphia.

International Exhibition, Phila., Pa: Kansas & Colorado State Bldg. - interior

International Exhibition, Phila., Pa: Kansas & Colorado State Bldg. - ...

Stereo copyrigted by the Centennial Photographic Co. No. 2042. This record contains unverified, old data from caption card. Caption card tracings: Exhibitions; Ka.; Colo.; Shelf.

International Exhibition, Phila., Pa.: Shoe and Leather Bldg.; interior from East End

International Exhibition, Phila., Pa.: Shoe and Leather Bldg.; interio...

Stereo copyrighted by the Centennial Photo. Co. No. 2332. This record contains unverified, old data from caption card. Caption card tracings: Industry... Boats...; Exhibitions; Navy, US; Bells...; Books; Shelf.

International Exhibition, Phila., Pa.: Govt. Bldg. from West Gallery

International Exhibition, Phila., Pa.: Govt. Bldg. from West Gallery

Stereo copyrighted by the Centennial Photo. Co. No. 2687. This record contains unverified, old data from caption card. Caption card tracings: Shelf.

International Exhibition, Phila., Pa.: Medical Dept. Bldg.

International Exhibition, Phila., Pa.: Medical Dept. Bldg.

In backgrd., 6 people posed in foregrd. Stereo copyrighted by the Centennial Photographic Co. No. 2149. This record contains unverified, old data from caption card. Caption card tracings: Sculptures; BI; Elevat... more

International Exhibition, Phila., Pa.: Govt. Bldg. interior - from Naval Dept. exhibit

International Exhibition, Phila., Pa.: Govt. Bldg. interior - from Nav...

Stereo copyrighted by the Centennial Photo. Co. No. 2130. This record contains unverified, old data from caption card. Caption card tracings: Shelf.

[Special oven for cooking coffee in Topkapı Sarayı (palace)] / Abdullah Frères.

[Special oven for cooking coffee in Topkapı Sarayı (palace)] / Abdulla...

Title translated from album caption. Captioned in Ottoman Turkish and French. No. 27. No. 745. In album: Topkapı Sarayı, Istanbul, Ottoman Empire. Forms part of: Abdul-Hamid II Collection (Library of Congress).

[Main Reading Room under construction in the Library of Congress Thomas Jefferson Building]

[Main Reading Room under construction in the Library of Congress Thoma...

Shows circular central desk and reading room desks.

The Vanderbills Mansions, 5th Avenue, New York

The Vanderbills Mansions, 5th Avenue, New York

On mount: American Series. Title from item. Forms part of the Marian S. Carson Collection at the Library of Congress.

Capitol of Tennessee at Nashville / A. Little, Phila. ; sketched by H.P. Whinnery.

Capitol of Tennessee at Nashville / A. Little, Phila. ; sketched by H....

Copyright by J.W. Lewis & Co., transferred to Wheeler Bros., Nashville, Tenn.

Ogontz Park, Ogontz, Montgomery Co., Penna. : Wm. T.B. Roberts, 410 Land Title Bldg., Philadelphia /

Ogontz Park, Ogontz, Montgomery Co., Penna. : Wm. T.B. Roberts, 410 La...

Bird's-eye view of residential subdivision. Oriented with north toward the upper right. Available also through the Library of Congress Web site as a raster image. Includes text and ill. LC copy fold-lined, torn... more

[Interior view of the Sultanahmet Camii (mosque)]

[Interior view of the Sultanahmet Camii (mosque)]

Also known as the Blue Mosque. Title devised by Library staff. No. 35.

7th and 9th St., N.W., Wash., D.C.--Looking up F Street [from 9th St. to 7th St.]

7th and 9th St., N.W., Wash., D.C.--Looking up F Street [from 9th St. ...

Brady-Handy Collection (Library of Congress). Photographic print made by Library of Congress Photoduplication Service from original glass negative, LC-BH85-24.

[Mahmudiye central middle school] / Abdullah Frères, photographes de S.M.I. le Sultan.

[Mahmudiye central middle school] / Abdullah Frères, photographes de S...

Title translated from album caption. Captioned in Ottoman Turkish and French. No. 24. In album: Schools, Ottoman Empire. Forms part of: Abdul-Hamid II Collection (Library of Congress).

Arch of Titus, Rome

Arch of Titus, Rome

From Cosmos Pictures Co., New York. No. 2602.

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