The US Customs Service was established in 1789 and is the oldest federal agency. This customs house is located in downtown Norfolk, Va near the waterfront which makes sense since one of its purposes is to control carriers of imports and exports. The architecture is an example of the Classical Revival style. The construction was completed in 1858. Historians at the time expected it to be "one of the most imposing and showy buildings in the city." I'm sure they weren't disappointed! It underwent rehabilitation and restoration from 1996-1999 and still serves as a customs house. It certainly is an unusual building for the area.
Another addition to my Norfolk series of solarplate etchings.