As a public health precaution due to COVID-19, all Smithsonian museums and the National Zoo are temporarily closed. No reopening date has been announced; see our website and social media channels for updates.

Smithsonian Food History Weekend

Cooking Up History: Culinary Traditions within the Cherokee Nation in Oklahoma with Chef Nico Albert, from the 2020 Food History Weekend

What is the Food History Project?

The Smithsonian Food History project at the National Museum of American History welcomes everyone to join in exploring history through the lens of food. The museum’s food history team conducts research, collects objects and documents, creates exhibitions, and develops dynamic public programs that illuminate the fundamental role of food in shaping many aspects of American history and cultural life.

Our food programs are based on the museum’s research and collecting initiatives and include on-line offerings as well as on-site programs and demonstrations. These events bring visitors together for relevant discussions that start with history and expand to the present and future of food in the United States. Special activities include free daytime programs, including live cooking demonstrations, and the annual Smithsonian Food History Weekend. The National Museum of American History is committed to examining the historical roots of contemporary issues concerning food and drink in the United States. To stay in the loop, sign up for our food history email newsletter here.



What is Food History Weekend?

Every year, the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History brings together food innovators, activists, educators, entrepreneurs, chefs, and scholars for conversations, cooking demonstrations, and hands-on activities with museum visitors to inspire a broader understanding of the history of food in the United States and the role we all play in shaping the future of food.


Dora Escobar During Cooking Up History at 2019 Smithsonian Food History Weekend


Made By US and Food Justice

Made by US is a new national movement spearheaded by leading U.S.history organizations who have come together to offer transformational, civic-focused programming leading up to the Nation’s 250th Anniversary in 2026. The National Museum of American History is one of the leading organizations behind the Made by US initiative. This video discusses the past, present, and future of food justice and food access in the United States. Speakers include NMAH historian Dr. Ashley Rose Young, Celia Cody-Carrese from Food Foward, and Caroline Klibanoff from Made by US.