Preparing for the Future

The First Ladies at the Smithsonian

Preparing for the Future

Starting as a costume display and changing along with Americans’ interest in the women themselves, the Smithsonian’s first ladies collection has always been a favorite with visitors, whether they come to see the gowns, to find out more about a particular first lady, or to see how their roles have changed over time.

The first ladies exhibition will undergo its next transition when it moves into a new home in the Museum’s renovated west wing. It will be another opportunity to reevaluate the collection and develop the Museum’s interpretation of these remarkable women and the contributions they make to the presidency and to American culture.