<p>Workmen place a bronze plaque of the Western Hemisphere in the lobby of National Geographic Society headquarters in Washington, D.C., in 1932.</p>

Laying the Foundation

Workmen place a bronze plaque of the Western Hemisphere in the lobby of National Geographic Society headquarters in Washington, D.C., in 1932.

Photograph by Clifton R. Adams, National Geographic

See What National Geographic Was Like Over 60 Years Ago

A technician wields a camera larger than himself, a photographer prepares for the field, and a “stripper” makes a map.

When people think of National Geographic, they often think of photographers and writers out in the field. But most staff members don’t spend their days trekking the world—rather, they spend them at Nat Geo’s offices in Washington, D.C.

These photos from our archives provide a glimpse of the work that went on behind those walls during the 1930s, 40s, and 50s.

8 From the Archive is a weekly selection culled from National Geographic's archive, and curated by Archivist Bill Bonner and Senior Photo Editor Jessie Wender.

Follow Becky Little on Twitter.

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