This vintage postcard shows the Department of Commerce building in Washington D.C. in the 1930’s before its construction was completed.
Construction of the building began on October 4, 1927, when Herbert Hoover was the Secretary of Commerce, and the cornerstone was laid on July 10, 1929, when he was President. The building was completed in 1932 and called the Department of Commerce building until it was renamed in 1981 to the Herbert Hoover Building.
The Department Of Commerce building was under construction at the time of this vintage postcard and the back says that it was planned “to be the largest unit forming the triangular group of new public buildings.” It covers the square bounded by 14th and 15th Streets East and E Street N. W. and “will cost when completed, $7,000,000.” This triangular group of buildings is now known as the Federal Triangle and consists of ten large, impressive government buildings.
The Deputy Secretary of Commerce is appointed by the President and the Department of Commerce is the Cabinet department of the United States government tasked with promoting economic growth.
This vintage postcard is historic in that it was printed before the buildings in the Federal Triangle were completed and before the name of the Department of Commerce building changed. It shows the view of a newly built structure and the writing on the back, the plans for the building.