The museum will reopen to the public on Friday, May 21. Free, timed-entry passes will be required for entry.

Calendar of Exhibitions and Events January 2021

December 10, 2020

The National Museum of American History is closed to the public as a public health precaution for the safety of our visitors and staff, due to regional and national trends related to COVID-19.

Please continue to check our website for updated information. The museum continues to offer its exhibitions, learning resources and public programming virtually, as well as experts for interviews or consultation.

STORIES OF 2020

Stories of 2020: Digital Storytelling Platform
Ongoing
Access at
https://americanhistory.si.edu/stories-of-2020

The Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History launched a digital storytelling initiative, Stories of 2020, which invites the public to contribute their own tales to this national collecting project of life at a time of multiple crises. The interactive platform can be accessed at https://americanhistory.si.edu/stories-of-2020. Learn more about this interactive platform on our press site: https://s.si.edu/Storiesof2020.

LEMELSON CENTER FOR THE STUDY OF INVENTION AND INNOVATION

25th Anniversary Innovative Lives Digital Panel
Jan. 13; 4 p.m.
Free registration required
invention.si.edu/events

This digital panel explores the ways in which inventing within constraints can often be the best pathway to solutions. A full panel of inventor alumni from past Innovative Lives programs will further explore new ideas and new solutions to people’s needs. Speakers include Lonnie Johnson, Tiffany Kelley, Mike Auspurger and Tim Pula.

For more information, visit invention.si.edu/events

ELECTION AND INAUGURAL POLITICAL HISTORY

Political History curators from the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History are experts on campaigns, elections, inaugurations and the First Ladies and are available for press interviews and inquiries.

Additionally, they are continuing to collect materials and memorabilia reflecting the 2020 Presidential election, including documenting the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on voting. Political history curators Lisa Kathleen Graddy, Jon Grinspan and Claire Jerry are reaching out to the Democratic and Republican organizations, other groups and to the voters themselves to augment the existing national collection which includes material from debates, rallies, protests and digital campaign activities. Curators are asking prospective donors to hold on to objects and other materials that could be considered for future acquisition and to send photos and brief descriptions of suggested objects to 2020ElectionCollection@si.edu.

The museum is home to the First Ladies Collection that began more than 100 years ago. Please find our "American Presidency: A Glorious Burden" exhibition here and "American Democracy: A Great Leap of Faith" here.

VIRTUAL PROGRAMS

Pandemic Perspectives Colloquium Series
"Racing for Vaccines"
Jan. 5; 4 p.m.


Join curators and historians for a series of panels offering perspectives on the current pandemic. Panelists will virtually share objects from the past using them as a springboard to a discussion of how to better understand the present. Audience questions are encouraged.

Moderator:
    Keith Wailoo, PhD, Princeton University
Panelists:
    Paul Offit, MD, University of Pennsylvania and Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
    Diane Wendt, National Museum of American History
    Col (Ret) John Grabenstein, PhD, founder, Vaccine Dynamics

Pandemic Perspectives Colloquium Series
"Mask Up!"
Jan. 19; 4 p.m.


Join curators and historians for a series of panels offering perspectives on the current pandemic. Panelists will virtually share objects from the past using them as a springboard to a discussion of how to better understand the present. Audience questions are encouraged.

Moderator:
    Peter Liebhold, National Museum of American History
Panelists:
    Alexandra Lord, PhD, National Museum of American History
    Michelle McClellan, PhD, Bentley Library, University of Michigan
    Clara Berg, Museum of History and Industry

SMITHSONIAN JAZZ MASTERWORKS ORCHESTRA

"Bernstein Reimagined" Album Launch
Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra
Jan. 29
Virtual


Composer Leonard Bernstein once called jazz “the ultimate common denominator of the American musical style.” The music impacted Bernstein’s work, not only in musical theater, but throughout his orchestral music as well. With the album "Bernstein Reimagined," the Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra mines the composer’s vast repertoire for music that delves into pieces rarely if ever performed in a jazz context. Due out January 29, 2021 via MCG Jazz, this music was originally commissioned as part of the worldwide celebration of Bernstein’s centennial year in 2018.

Watch the Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra perform "Times Square Ballet,” a track on "Bernstein Reimagined":
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TTbi8G43B_U