Smithsonian museums continue to be closed to support the effort to contain the spread of COVID-19. No re-opening date is available at this time. Check our website and social media for updates.
2019 marked the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising, the 75th anniversary of D-Day, and the 150th anniversary of completion of the...
According to a recent report by Mintel, a marketing research agency, few millennials use bar soap. Don't be alarmed, though. They...
Eliminating or lowering rates of communicable disease often requires that we participate together in the battle against infectious disease...

Blog Posts in "From the Collections"

Mary Walker
Mary Edwards Walker defied convention in just about everything she did. Walker was uncompromising in her beliefs about herself and the...
In March 1995, Ladies Home Journal named Dr. Florence Haseltine one of the ten most important women in medicine. Haseltine, currently...
Maggie Lena Walker was one of the most important Black businesswomen in the nation, and today too few people have heard of her.Maggie Lena...
An illustration of Civil War-era African American troops in the U.S. military posing with the U.S. flag in the background
Every election season in the United States revolves around a set of issues—health care, foreign affairs, the economy. In 1868, at the...
The museum has created a new collecting initiative focused on how undocumented activists are leading fights for political representation....
A line of people wait outside the Baltimore branch of the NAACP in 1843
In 2020, the Fifteenth Amendment—the first voting rights amendment added to the U.S. Constitution—celebrates its 150th anniversary. You’ve...
This week, the third impeachment trial of a sitting U.S. president begins. As we prepare to bear witness to this historic moment, we...
Happy days are here again banner.
January 17, 1920, was an important day in American history. Why? Because on that day the grand social experiment called Prohibition was...
Have you ever wondered how companies pick their holiday card designs? How do they know what will sell? During the 1880s, Boston...
What weighs a quarter ton, has four wheels, was the first of its kind, and was built in Pennsylvania? The Bantam Jeep Prototype of course!...
An etching of a man with a musket.
“About the prints … I make no comment, save that they were made from the indelible impressions of war. They are not imaginary. I saw them...
A group of people by what appears to be a hot-air balloon.
Q: What’s cylindrical, made of wax, and part of one of history’s great showdowns?A: These records in the museum collection with audio...
The Battle of the Bulge was the largest and bloodiest single battle fought by the United States in World War II. After almost constant...
Codex costume and staff, as worn by Felicia Day in The Guild
Codex costume and staff, as worn by Felicia Day in "The Guild." Costume designed by Sarah Trost; staff designed by Greg Aronowitz....
Tinted portrait of a man.
In November 2019, Private First Class Francis X. McGraw’s Medal of Honor will go on display in our Price of Freedom exhibition. This is his...
You know Kermit, Bert and Ernie, Cookie Monster, and the rest of the Sesame Street gang. But you might be surprised to learn their...
If you were to buy a donut and cup of coffee at the Donut Bar in the Royal Grand Hotel in Monrovia, Liberia, you would more than likely pay...
Imagine a dark and stormy night. A headless horseman chases a frantic school teacher through the woods. What do you picture? Is it...
What do the popularity of luxury quilts have to do with the difficulty of feeding bugs? More than you think.Our new exhibition Everyday...
A skull.
There we were, two curators sifting centuries-old barrels of mud through a screen, when something surprising rolled out of the muck: a...
The next time you raise a glass of craft beer, make sure you toast former President Jimmy Carter. No, really. You should be offering your...
Pink marble fragment
The view from the western side of the museum is spectacular. It includes the western end of the National Mall, the World War II Memorial,...
Bouquets in front of a gas station.
World Trade Center, September 2001, by Christophe AgouThe attacks of September 11, 2001, shocked the nation. Nearly 3,000 people were...
“The world infrequently notes the passing of a squirrel," announced an Arizona radio station on August 10, 1949. But when it comes to the...
When you think about the culture around skateboarding, you might think about the laid-back vibe of acceptance and inclusion that the sport...
A graphic with a red background and a white illustration of the neck of a guitar with a bird resting on it.
The weekend of August 15 through 18, 1969, approximately 400,000 revelers traveled from near and far to inhabit the rolling fields of Max...
D-Day. June 6, 1944.  The words bring to mind images of hundreds of landing craft, machines, and American fighting forces landing on...
The Stonewall uprising began June 28, 1969, in response to a police raid at The Stonewall Inn, a gay bar in New York, and has since...
A tin foil version of the Stanley Cup
I’m a lifelong resident of the Washington, D.C. area and a hockey fan. So imagine my excitement (and surprise) last year when my team, the...
Multiple rainbows flag items
In 2017, in response to a slew of racist incidents in the Gayborhood, Philadelphia added black and brown stripes to the traditional six-...
Square banner for boxer John L. Sullivan showing flags and the phrases “Champion of the world…May the best man win”
There has been a lot of debate over the last few years about whether sports should be political. From NFL players taking a knee to a range...
Woman wearing purple latex gloves presses gently into the inside of one of the Ruby Slippers into a case.
Many noses are pressed against the case that houses Dorothy's Ruby Slippers each day. The famous shoes from The Wizard of Oz attract a lot...
 Lobby cards for the film "Saludos Amigos"
Every April, people throughout North, Central, and South America celebrate Pan American Day. The roots of Pan American Day go back to 1890...
“We were picking dandelions on the lawn there and we would boil them up,” Henry T. Chamberlain remembered. During the Great Depression,...
A heart shaped content
They had just arrived in a foreign country and the small girl’s mother was sent away.  Ernest and Mimi Hausner fled their home in...
The National Museum of American History has a staggering 1.8 million objects in the collections. It isn’t possible for one person to know...
In May 2018, the Boy Scouts of America changed the name of its program for older children to Scouts BSA and opened membership to girls for...
Three political ribbons with red, yellow, and blue colors, all showing illustrations of James Buchanan
James Buchanan. Do you recognize this name? According to TIME magazine’s “Top 10 Forgettable Presidents,” you probably don’t. Chances are,...
Souvenirs from battlefields the world over can be found in our Division of Political and Military History. Unique among them is a mounted...
Close-up detail of the end of a fairy's wand. It's the shape of a star, covered in silver/white/gold gems or sparkly stones.
The museum's pair of Ruby Slippers from The Wizard of Oz returned to display on October 19, 2018, after spending time in the museum's...
Blue, white, and red banner with an image of Admiral Dewey in center of white stripe, surrounded by laurels.
George Dewey was promoted to the rank of rear admiral after the Battle of Manila Bay. Dewey was celebrated in American culture with songs,...
These are our most fascinating blog posts of 2018, according to our readers.When FBI agents showed up with a pair of sparkly, red shoesA...
This year we celebrate 50 years of mumps vaccination in America, helping to make chipmunk cheeks and swollen testicles a thing of our...
Two advertisements for the 1947 Amateur World Series with cartoon illustrations of a baseball pitcher and catcher
Over seventy years ago, in 1947, Jackie Robinson became the first African American athlete to play in the World Series, having famously...
Woman in green shirt with purple latex gloves adjusts a microscope. She is looking at the Ruby Slippers.
Wielding an adorably tiny vacuum, objects conservator Dawn Wallace peered through her stereomicroscope at thousands of 80-year-old red...
Sesame Street was an innovative and radical children's television program when it premiered in 1969. In the 1960s, many parents were...
Cartoon drawing of a tangled ball of yarn with emotions such as “anxiety” and “rage” tangled up
Title page to Garrard Conley's workbook from the gay-conversion camp Love in ActionIt is dangerous to be different, and certain kinds of...
An illustration of an African American soldier
Suffering from "shell shock and a general breakdown," Charles Mackall and James Randall arrived in Philadelphia in September 1918 from...

Pages