Director's Message

Anthea Hartig
Anthea M. Hartig, Ph.D.
Elizabeth MacMillan Director
National Museum of American History

Dear Friends,

As of November 23, all Smithsonian museums, including the National Zoo, are temporarily closed to the public.

We are taking this step as a public health precaution for the safety of our visitors and staff, due to regional and national trends related to COVID-19. We took a slow and cautious approach to reopening the Smithsonian so we could adapt as the situation changes. Our new guidelines and precautions were working to keep our visitors and staff safe. Still, our concern grows as cases increase regionally and nationally.

We have always been ready and willing to take a step back when it is necessary to protect our visitors and staff. Due to the changing nature of the situation, we are not announcing reopening dates at this time. We are carefully watching guidance from local, state, and federal governments, public health officials, and the CDC.

We are contacting visitors who had reserved passes directly. We look forward to when we can safely welcome you back.

We will provide updates on our website and our social media channels. You have my commitment that we will continue to bring you the best in American history digitally through our exhibitions, learning resources, and public programming.

Thank you for your support of the National Museum of American History. Please do all you can for the care and safety of yourselves, your loved ones, and your communities.

Yours Appreciatively,


Anthea M. Hartig, Ph.D.
The Elizabeth MacMillan Director, National Museum of American History