The Institute of World Politics is located at 1521-1525 16th Street, NW, in central Washington, D.C. The campus is eight blocks north of the White House, and four blocks east of the Dupont Circle Metro station. Limited free parking is available in a lot near the Institute after 6:00 pm, and free on-street parking is available after 6:30 pm. Restaurants and national tourist attractions are available within walking distance. To plan your route to IWP, please click here.
The Marlatt Mansion
The Institute's main building, at 1521 16th Street, NW, is the historic, three-story red brick Marlatt Mansion. Its first floor includes two lecture halls, a large foyer with a waiting area for guests, and the Office of Student Affairs. The second and third floors house most of the Institute's faculty and administrative staff. The lower or basement level includes the Financial Aid Office, another classroom, the student lounge, and additional staff and faculty offices.
The Marlatt Mansion was built in 1908 by Dr. Charles Marlatt, an entomologist with the Department of Agriculture during the presidency of Theodore Roosevelt. Dr. Marlatt had a distinguished career as an insect illustrator, world traveler, author of numerous works on entomological subjects, and President of the Cosmos Club. He designed the decorative wood and plaster carvings of insects, birds, and animals found throughout the main floor of the mansion.
The Marlatt family maintained the building until selling it in 1970. From 1973 to 1975 the Marlatt Mansion was owned by the government of the USSR, which used it to house the Soviet Embassy's Office of the Commercial Counselor, as well as offices of the KGB. During that time it is believed to have served as the temporary residence of Soviet Communist Party General Secretary Leonid Brezhnev.
In 1994, the longtime Institute Board member and benefactor, Mr. Donald E. Bently, purchased both the Marlatt Mansion and two adjacent houses. Four years later, the two buildings at 1523 and 1525 16th Street, NW, were completely renovated and united into Bently Hall, a modern four-story building with restored historic facades. The Institute's library is located on the basement level and first floor of this building. There is a classroom on the basement level and a seminar room on the first floor. Students' computer workstations are also found on the first floor, together with the offices of the library and other professional staff.
The Institute’s library, located on the basement level and first floor of Bently Hall, currently contains more than 30,000 volumes, including thousands of rare and out-of-print national security books and documents from the American Security Council Foundation and from former senior government officials. In June 2002, the Institute received the gift of the extraordinary private library of William J. Casey, the late Director of Central Intelligence.
In addition to a basic collection of foreign affairs periodicals and reference works, the IWP library has several specialized resources. These include collections of books in: U.S. foreign policy; U.S. intelligence and counterintelligence; and primary-source Cold War materials in Soviet/Russian/East European affairs and U.S. internal security.
High-speed internet access is also available to students and faculty. Electronic resources include thousands of journals and other periodicals in databases offered by EBSCO Host, as well as e-books, newspapers, and other materials. Topical pathfinders are being developed by the IWP library to assist researchers.
Family Matters of Greater Washington lends us their parking lot after 6:00 PM on weekdays and on weekends. Please click here for a parking map.