The woman who would be cardinal

This is one of the oldest theater costumes in the museum's collection. It was made around 1857 for the role of Cardinal Thomas Wolsey in Shakespeare's Henry VIII. But it is important less for its age than for the fact that it was made for an actress not an actor.

Great napkins of history: Laffer and Zandman's sketches of breakthrough ideas

A seemingly simple cloth napkin with some writing on it, this object was so much more. Economist Art Laffer sketched a new direction for the Republican Party on this napkin.

Antibodies are a girl's best friend

For the uninitiated, the plain brown box could have been anything. However, for some women, it was everything.

Contemporary collecting: Creepy costumes and props from "The Walking Dead" join our collection

When my daughter, Katelyn, told me I would like a new TV show that had aired on Halloween night in 2010, I was skeptical. I'm not a big fan of scary shows but she doesn't like them either so I gave it a try. She was right, of course. But this wasn't your ordinary, run of the mill scary show.

Plague hits Mouse Town, USA!

In the 1940s a silent killer stalked the streets of a very small town near San Francisco. On one side of town, the residents fell ill and succumbed to a deadly plague.

An-tee-bodies: T-shirts in celebration of the antibody

When did you first learn about your immune system? Maybe you have childhood memories of being vaccinated, hearing about the protection your body was building through antibodies.

Scrapbooks: troublemakers and treasures in the archives

October is American Archives Month—a great time to flip through the old family scrapbooks and spend time preserving these homemade albums that often hold so much history.

Looking back on "M*A*S*H," the show and the exhibition

Many of us long for the days when the only television coverage of Pyongyang's military might came in the form of conventional bomb attacks on the 4077 Mobile Army Surgical Hospital, the fictitious medical unit featured in the hit show M*A*S*H.

Yo Te Sigo Queriendo (I Still Love You): Memories of Selena

From the 1950s to 1970s, U.S. advertising started to shift from mass marketing to recognizing and defining distinct target markets. A unique example of this includes the rise of Selena Quintanilla-Pérez (1971–1995).

Ask a Curator Day: Indulge your curiosity, history nerds!

Getting to handle and study treasured artifacts, pursuing fascinating research adventures all day, and building inspirational exhibitions—people who work in museums sure are lucky. But much of the time, museum workers do all these cool things behind the scenes. All that changes on Wednesday, September 13, 2017. Curators and other museum staffers will be lured away from their daily work to answer yourquestions for Ask a Curator Day, so get your questions ready.