Museums Items (16 total)

This observatory was established in March 1890 and was one of the first to practice astrophysics. It was housed in buildings in the South Yard of the Smithsonian Institution Building's grounds. Early research conducted on the site focused on solar…

The grounds surrounding the National Museum of the American Indian are an extension of the exhibit space within. Representing what local Chesapeake Bay landscapes would have been like before European contact, the space pays tribute to indigenous…

In the 1920s, art collector and financier Andrew Mellon decided that the city needed a proper museum of art to rival those in Europe. With construction funds, a sizable endowment, and art all donated from Mellon, construction on the National Gallery…

When Andrew Mellon donated his collection to form the National Gallery of Art in the 1930s, he asked Congress to reserve land near to the Gallery for future expansion. By the 1960s, the Gallery needed that expansion. With funding from the Andrew…

The National Museum of African American History and Culture was established by an Act of Congress in 2003 and is the only national museum devoted to African American life. The goals of the museum are: to educate about African American history and…

The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum serves as a memorial to the thousands of people murdered during the Holocaust, and to teach about the need to prevent genocide worldwide. Suggested by the President’s Commission on the Holocaust in 1979,…

The Aircraft Building was constructed in 1917 for the use of the US Signal Service during World War I. After the war ended, the building was transferred to the Smithsonian. It opened to the public in October 1920 as an exhibit space housing aircraft.…

The National Air and Space Museum holds the world's largest collection of historic aircraft and spacecraft. A second location in Chantilly, Virginia, opened in 2003 to display even more items from its collection, including the Space Shuttle…

A bear, an eagle, badgers, and buffaloes comprised the original exhibition of the Department of Living Animals on the south side of the Smithsonian Institution Building. Opened to the public in 1887, the Department's live exhibits gave Smithsonian…

The Arts and Industries Building opened in 1881 as the “US National Museum.” Spencer Baird, the second Secretary of the Smithsonian, developed exhibits for the museum that included objects from the Centennial Exposition of 1876 and samples of the…
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