Audit of the United States Capitol Historical Society for the Year Ended January 31, 1976

GGD-77-5: Published: Dec 3, 1976. Publicly Released: Dec 3, 1976.

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The U.S. Capitol Historical Society, a nonprofit organization, was incorporated in the District of Columbia in 1962. Its daily operations are carried out by three departments: sales, administrative and accounting, and history. Income is primarily from the sales of books, calendars, and other merchandise. Other sources of income include royalties from products copyrighted and designed by the Society, interest from investments, and contributions for the Sound and Light Program and Art work in the Capitol. The Architect of the Capitol contracted with the Society to operate the Capitol Visitor Center, which provides educational material to the public. A History Endowment Fund, established in January 1970 to finance the Society's publications or other projects, had a fund balance of $268,000 in January, 1976. Pending approval, the society plans to produce a Sound and Light Program on the east front of the Capitol at an estimated cost of $10,000,000. Already, $31,447 has been raised, but fundraising operations are being delayed until approval has been given. The Society has given exclusive reproduction and sales rights to Films, Inc., for "City out of Wilderness--Washington," which was produced at a total cost of $350,673; the Society will retain title to it. In 1964, the Society obtained exemption from D.C. sales tax for sales of a book, but it has continued to sell other items under the exemption, which may, in fact, not be eligible. It may owe the D.C. Government $50,000, but the funds are available. Two assets were donated to the Society for an estimated value of $26,250. Private contributions are accepted, including $150,000 pledged by The Daughters of the American Revolution.

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