Inauguration Day as it unfolds, in pictures

Louise Hall
·1 min read
<p>The ‘Field of Flags’ and the Washington Monument are seen on the National Mall in front of the Capitol building</p> (AFP via Getty)

The ‘Field of Flags’ and the Washington Monument are seen on the National Mall in front of the Capitol building

(AFP via Getty)

Inauguration Day 2021 began like no other. A ring of steel and tens of thousands of National Guard troops surround Washington DC for the swearing-in of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris, following the insurrection at the US Capitol earlier this month by a pro-Trump mob.

The outgoing president broke with 150 years of tradition and refused to welcome his successor and be present for the peaceful transfer of power at noon. Instead, Mr Trump jetted off on Air Force One for his new life in Florida early Wednesday. Here, The Independent follows the day as it unfolds.

Nearly 200,000 American flags are seen in the early hours of Inauguration Day on the National Mall as part of a ‘Field of Flags’ exhibition to represent those not able to attend due to the Covid-19 pandemicAFP via Getty Images
Nearly 200,000 American flags are seen in the early hours of Inauguration Day on the National Mall as part of a ‘Field of Flags’ exhibition to represent those not able to attend due to the Covid-19 pandemicAFP via Getty Images
The Washington Monument was closed to members of the public for Joe Biden’s inauguration amid security concerns following an attack on the Capitol by pro-Trump rioters on 6 JanuaryREUTERS
The Washington Monument was closed to members of the public for Joe Biden’s inauguration amid security concerns following an attack on the Capitol by pro-Trump rioters on 6 JanuaryREUTERS
Donald Trump and Melania Trump depart the White House for the last time on the morning of Inauguration Day. The couple is eschewing the tradition of meeting the incoming first family and will not attend president-elect Biden’s inauguration. Ms Trump has not given incoming first lady, Jill Biden, a tour of the private residence and has reportedly not been in touch with her at allAFP via Getty Images
Donald Trump and Melania Trump depart the White House for the last time on the morning of Inauguration Day. The couple is eschewing the tradition of meeting the incoming first family and will not attend president-elect Biden’s inauguration. Ms Trump has not given incoming first lady, Jill Biden, a tour of the private residence and has reportedly not been in touch with her at allAFP via Getty Images
Donald Trump and Melania Trump hold hands as they prepare to depart the White House on Marine One to Florida several hours ahead of the inauguration ceremony. Mr Trump is the first president in more than 150 years to refuse to attend their successor's inaugurationGetty Images
Donald Trump and Melania Trump hold hands as they prepare to depart the White House on Marine One to Florida several hours ahead of the inauguration ceremony. Mr Trump is the first president in more than 150 years to refuse to attend their successor's inaugurationGetty Images
Members of Donald Trump’s family including senior advisors Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner stand on the tarmac at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland as they arrive for US President Donald Trump's departure ceremonyAFP via Getty Images
Members of Donald Trump’s family including senior advisors Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner stand on the tarmac at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland as they arrive for US President Donald Trump's departure ceremonyAFP via Getty Images
Joe Biden and Jill Biden attend services at the Cathedral of St Matthew the Apostle ahead of the presidential inauguration ceremony. Once inaugurated, Mr Biden will be the second Catholic president in US history and the first since John F KennedyGetty Images
Joe Biden and Jill Biden attend services at the Cathedral of St Matthew the Apostle ahead of the presidential inauguration ceremony. Once inaugurated, Mr Biden will be the second Catholic president in US history and the first since John F KennedyGetty Images
US National Guardsmen stand on a closed street outside the Capitol Building. Some 25,000 National Guard troops have been brought in from across the country to ensure security on Inauguration Day, replacing the huge crowds of tourists that would usually gather in the nation’s capital to welcome a new presidentYegor Aleyev/TASS
US National Guardsmen stand on a closed street outside the Capitol Building. Some 25,000 National Guard troops have been brought in from across the country to ensure security on Inauguration Day, replacing the huge crowds of tourists that would usually gather in the nation’s capital to welcome a new presidentYegor Aleyev/TASS
Security is set up along Pennsylvania Avenue before the 59th Presidential Inauguration. Security officials have assured that there will be extremely tight security around the entire capital region on Inauguration Day after pro-Trump rioters breached the Capitol on 6 January AP
Security is set up along Pennsylvania Avenue before the 59th Presidential Inauguration. Security officials have assured that there will be extremely tight security around the entire capital region on Inauguration Day after pro-Trump rioters breached the Capitol on 6 January AP
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and her husband ahead of Joe Biden’s arrival at the Capitol for the inauguration ceremonyEPA
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and her husband ahead of Joe Biden’s arrival at the Capitol for the inauguration ceremonyEPA
Former Vice President Dan Quayle arrives for the inauguration ceremony of Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States on the West Front of the CapitolAP
Former Vice President Dan Quayle arrives for the inauguration ceremony of Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States on the West Front of the CapitolAP
Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, Jill Biden, and Doug Emhoff wave as they arrive on the East Front of the Capitol for the inauguration ceremonyGetty Images
Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, Jill Biden, and Doug Emhoff wave as they arrive on the East Front of the Capitol for the inauguration ceremonyGetty Images
Former president Bill Clinton arrives with former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States on the West Front of the CapitolGetty Images
Former president Bill Clinton arrives with former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States on the West Front of the CapitolGetty Images
Former President George W Bush and his wife Laura Bush arrive for the inauguration ceremony of Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States on the West Front of the CapitolREUTERS
Former President George W Bush and his wife Laura Bush arrive for the inauguration ceremony of Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States on the West Front of the CapitolREUTERS
Former President Barack Obama and former First Lady Michelle Obama arrive at the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States on the West Front of the CapitolGetty Images
Former President Barack Obama and former First Lady Michelle Obama arrive at the inauguration of Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States on the West Front of the CapitolGetty Images
Vice President Mike Pence and Karen Pence arrive at the inauguration of Joe Biden on the West Front of the US Capitol. Mr Pence is attending the inauguration ceremony despite the absence of President Donald Trump, who left Washington before the ceremony beganAP
Vice President Mike Pence and Karen Pence arrive at the inauguration of Joe Biden on the West Front of the US Capitol. Mr Pence is attending the inauguration ceremony despite the absence of President Donald Trump, who left Washington before the ceremony beganAP
Vice-president elect Kamala Harris and her husband Doug Emhoff wave as they make their entrance to the inaugural ceremony on the West Front of the CapitolREUTERS
Vice-president elect Kamala Harris and her husband Doug Emhoff wave as they make their entrance to the inaugural ceremony on the West Front of the CapitolREUTERS
President-elect Joe Biden and Jill Biden arrive at his inauguration ceremony on the West Front of the CapitolGetty Images
President-elect Joe Biden and Jill Biden arrive at his inauguration ceremony on the West Front of the CapitolGetty Images
Donald Trump and Melania Trump arrive at Palm Beach International Airport in West Palm Beach, Florida after departing Washington before the inauguration ceremony of Joe BidenREUTERS
Donald Trump and Melania Trump arrive at Palm Beach International Airport in West Palm Beach, Florida after departing Washington before the inauguration ceremony of Joe BidenREUTERS
Senator Amy Klobuchar speaks at the inauguration of US President-elect Joe Biden on the West Front of the US CapitolGetty Images
Senator Amy Klobuchar speaks at the inauguration of US President-elect Joe Biden on the West Front of the US CapitolGetty Images
Lady Gaga sings the National Anthem during the inauguration ceremony on the West Front of the Capitol. Ahead of the inauguration on 19 January, Gaga said she hoped the ceremony would be ‘a day of peace for all Americans.’REUTERS
Lady Gaga sings the National Anthem during the inauguration ceremony on the West Front of the Capitol. Ahead of the inauguration on 19 January, Gaga said she hoped the ceremony would be ‘a day of peace for all Americans.’REUTERS
Kamala Harris is sworn in as vice president, becoming the first woman to hold the office in the nation’s history, as well as the first Black woman and first woman of South Asian descent to hold the title. Spouse Doug Emhoff holds the bible and also makes history in becoming the first ever first gentlemanREUTERS
Kamala Harris is sworn in as vice president, becoming the first woman to hold the office in the nation’s history, as well as the first Black woman and first woman of South Asian descent to hold the title. Spouse Doug Emhoff holds the bible and also makes history in becoming the first ever first gentlemanREUTERS
Joe Biden is sworn in as the 46th president of the United States as his wife Jill Biden holds the bible. The president welcomed a ‘day of history and hope’ after taking Oath of Office saying: ‘This is America’s day. This is democracy’s day. A day of history and hope’REUTERS
Joe Biden is sworn in as the 46th president of the United States as his wife Jill Biden holds the bible. The president welcomed a ‘day of history and hope’ after taking Oath of Office saying: ‘This is America’s day. This is democracy’s day. A day of history and hope’REUTERS
Joe Biden delivers a speech after being sworn in as the 46th President of the United States during which he addressed the severity of the coronavirus pandemic across the US, the rise of political extremism, and outlined a path towards unity for the nationREUTERS
Joe Biden delivers a speech after being sworn in as the 46th President of the United States during which he addressed the severity of the coronavirus pandemic across the US, the rise of political extremism, and outlined a path towards unity for the nationREUTERS
Amanda Gorman recites a poem during the inauguration of Joe Biden, referencing Biblical scripture and at times echoing the oratory of John F Kennedy and the Rev Martin Luther King Jr as she asked: ‘Where can we find light/In this never-ending shade?’REUTERS
Amanda Gorman recites a poem during the inauguration of Joe Biden, referencing Biblical scripture and at times echoing the oratory of John F Kennedy and the Rev Martin Luther King Jr as she asked: ‘Where can we find light/In this never-ending shade?’REUTERS
Attendance at Joe Biden’s inauguration was slashed to limited numbers in light of the coronavirus pandemic, which has claimed the lives of more than 400,000 Americans Getty Images
Attendance at Joe Biden’s inauguration was slashed to limited numbers in light of the coronavirus pandemic, which has claimed the lives of more than 400,000 Americans Getty Images
Joe Biden and his wife Jill Biden watch a military pass in review ceremony on the East Front of the Capitol at the conclusion of the inauguration ceremoniesAP
Joe Biden and his wife Jill Biden watch a military pass in review ceremony on the East Front of the Capitol at the conclusion of the inauguration ceremoniesAP
Joe Biden signs three documents including an inauguration declaration, cabinet nominations, and sub-cabinet nominations in the President’s Room at the Capitol AP
Joe Biden signs three documents including an inauguration declaration, cabinet nominations, and sub-cabinet nominations in the President’s Room at the Capitol AP
Joe Biden received a historical presidential escort from 15th Street to the White House with representations from every branch of the military but no crowds or tourists due to the coronavirus pandemic and safety concerns REUTERS
Joe Biden received a historical presidential escort from 15th Street to the White House with representations from every branch of the military but no crowds or tourists due to the coronavirus pandemic and safety concerns REUTERS
President Joe Biden is driven through Washington with a military escort to Arlington Cemetery ahead of the wreath-laying ceremony as streets are lined with members of the militarySky News
President Joe Biden is driven through Washington with a military escort to Arlington Cemetery ahead of the wreath-laying ceremony as streets are lined with members of the militarySky News
Joe Biden and Kamala Harris lay a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at the Arlington National Cemetery following the inauguration ceremonyAP
Joe Biden and Kamala Harris lay a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at the Arlington National Cemetery following the inauguration ceremonyAP
Joe Biden and Jill Biden wave as they arrive at the North Portico of the White House, which has had its 132 rooms deep cleaned since Donald Trump’s departure in light of the coronavirus pandemicREUTERS
Joe Biden and Jill Biden wave as they arrive at the North Portico of the White House, which has had its 132 rooms deep cleaned since Donald Trump’s departure in light of the coronavirus pandemicREUTERS