Earthquake Damage: Castle Damage, 1

Photo: John Gibbons, Smithsonian Institution
August 26, 2011
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Photo: John Gibbons, Smithsonian Institution

The Smithsonian Institution Building ("The Castle") in Washington, D.C., sustained localized damage in the east wing during the Aug. 23, 2011 Virginia earthquake. Six chimneys and decorative turrets on the roof were damaged when some of the mortar holding the stones was shaken loose during the earthquake and some stones shifted in place. Crews worked to secure the structures with plywood and metal and nylon bands so they would not sustain further damage from anticipated Hurricane Irene in the days following the earthquake.

The Castle remains closed to the public and staff through Monday, Aug. 29. All Smithsonian museums and the National Zoo are open.