U.S. Department of the Interior Museum

U.S. Department of the Interior Museum Since 1938 the Interior Museum has been educating the public about the history, art and architecture, and current missions and programs of the U.S.

Department of the Interior.

Operating as usual

12/22/2021

Happy first day of winter!

Across the country America’s public lands are being transformed into winter wonderlands. The days may be colder and shorter, but they are still full of adventure. We hope you find time to explore!

Photo of Yosemite National Park by Jason Hoffmann (sharetheexperience.org).

Our #BigPictureMorans story resumes! #OnThisDate 1871, identical bills for setting aside Yellowstone as a “public park o...
12/18/2021

Our #BigPictureMorans story resumes! #OnThisDate 1871, identical bills for setting aside Yellowstone as a “public park or pleasuring ground for the benefit and enjoyment of the people” are introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives (H.R. 764) by William H. Clagett, the delegate for the Territory of Montana, and in the U.S. Senate (S. 392) by Senator Samuel Pomeroy of Kansas.

📷: Photo of William H. Clagett (1838-1901) from Wikimedia Commons; image of Samuel C. Pomeroy (1816-1891) courtesy of the U.S. Senate Historical Office

12/07/2021
Happy Holidays From Interior

❄️Season's greetings from all of us to all of you!❄️

(See if you can spot our museum staff's cameo appearance in the video!)

Artist Marcus Cadman frequently blends elements from the modern world and his Navajo–Kickapoo heritage as a metaphor for...
11/30/2021

Artist Marcus Cadman frequently blends elements from the modern world and his Navajo–Kickapoo heritage as a metaphor for his personal experiences growing up at a crossroad of cultures. Here, “Brother Eagle” circles above within the Four Directions of the People. Although this work is rendered in acrylic, Cadman’s portfolio also includes elaborate collage— incorporating packaging, currency, photographs, and even BINGO cards—offering social commentary while juxtaposing the sacred with the secular.

#NativeAmericanHeritageMonth

🎨 “Eagle Nation,” by Marcus Cadman, 2020, acrylic on canvas, U.S. Department of the Interior Museum, OSAC 07379

Artist Marcus Cadman frequently blends elements from the modern world and his Navajo–Kickapoo heritage as a metaphor for his personal experiences growing up at a crossroad of cultures. Here, “Brother Eagle” circles above within the Four Directions of the People. Although this work is rendered in acrylic, Cadman’s portfolio also includes elaborate collage— incorporating packaging, currency, photographs, and even BINGO cards—offering social commentary while juxtaposing the sacred with the secular.

#NativeAmericanHeritageMonth

🎨 “Eagle Nation,” by Marcus Cadman, 2020, acrylic on canvas, U.S. Department of the Interior Museum, OSAC 07379

Artist Eric Tippeconnic attributes his love of art and history to his multicultural background. He is an enrolled member...
11/29/2021

Artist Eric Tippeconnic attributes his love of art and history to his multicultural background. He is an enrolled member of the Comanche Nation on his father’s side, while his mother is Danish. He was born in Alaska and spent his childhood on numerous reservations due to his father’s career with the @Bureau of Indian Affairs, but Tippeconnic also traveled to Denmark each summer.

Hallmarks of Tippeconnic’s work are vibrant colors and a sense of motion, which he sees as an expression of the dynamism of Indigenous American cultures. In addition to his artistry, Tippeconnic is the first Comanche to earn a doctorate in history, and he is a professor of American Indian Studies at California State University San Marcos.

#NativeAmericanHeritageMonth

🎨 "In the Lead," by Eric Tippeconnic, 2021, acrylic on canvas, U.S. Department of the Interior Museum, OSAC 07377

Artist Eric Tippeconnic attributes his love of art and history to his multicultural background. He is an enrolled member of the Comanche Nation on his father’s side, while his mother is Danish. He was born in Alaska and spent his childhood on numerous reservations due to his father’s career with the @Bureau of Indian Affairs, but Tippeconnic also traveled to Denmark each summer.

Hallmarks of Tippeconnic’s work are vibrant colors and a sense of motion, which he sees as an expression of the dynamism of Indigenous American cultures. In addition to his artistry, Tippeconnic is the first Comanche to earn a doctorate in history, and he is a professor of American Indian Studies at California State University San Marcos.

#NativeAmericanHeritageMonth

🎨 "In the Lead," by Eric Tippeconnic, 2021, acrylic on canvas, U.S. Department of the Interior Museum, OSAC 07377

Whether he is doing ledger drawings, rendering pop and satire paintings in brilliant color, or reimagining iconic works ...
11/28/2021

Whether he is doing ledger drawings, rendering pop and satire paintings in brilliant color, or reimagining iconic works but with Native subjects, Oklahoma-based artist Brent Learned (Haa Naa Jaa Ne Doa) grounds his art in storytelling from his Cheyenne-Arapaho heritage. Learned says that with his contemporary ledger art he is paying homage to his tribe specifically and, more broadly, sustaining the Plains Indian ledger art tradition. In this piece from 2014, he has superimposed the narrative of a bison hunt onto antique paper from an 1889 store ledger. Learned is among a growing number of contemporary Native artists reintroducing this 19th-century art form to 21st-century audiences.

📷: Untitled, Brent Lincoln Learned, 2014, colored pencil and ink on antique paper,
OSAC 07153

#NativeAmericanHeritageMonth

Whether he is doing ledger drawings, rendering pop and satire paintings in brilliant color, or reimagining iconic works but with Native subjects, Oklahoma-based artist Brent Learned (Haa Naa Jaa Ne Doa) grounds his art in storytelling from his Cheyenne-Arapaho heritage. Learned says that with his contemporary ledger art he is paying homage to his tribe specifically and, more broadly, sustaining the Plains Indian ledger art tradition. In this piece from 2014, he has superimposed the narrative of a bison hunt onto antique paper from an 1889 store ledger. Learned is among a growing number of contemporary Native artists reintroducing this 19th-century art form to 21st-century audiences.

📷: Untitled, Brent Lincoln Learned, 2014, colored pencil and ink on antique paper,
OSAC 07153

#NativeAmericanHeritageMonth

Chickasaw Nation artist Lance Straughn has long been known for his "realistic impressionist" style. In 2018, however, he...
11/27/2021

Chickasaw Nation artist Lance Straughn has long been known for his "realistic impressionist" style. In 2018, however, he began embracing looser compositions and bolder colors—as in this piece—for what he calls his "spirit paintings."

Straughn published "Images in the Smoke: Native American Myths" (2021), for which he also created all the illustrations. This painting specifically accompanies the Chickasaw account of "How Day and Night Were Divided," in which the standing bear is the spirit of the Bear (Nita’) Clan animal guide.

📷: “Bear Clan Guardian” by Lance Straughn, 2019, oil on linen, OSAC 07378

#NativeAmericanHeritageMonth

Chickasaw Nation artist Lance Straughn has long been known for his "realistic impressionist" style. In 2018, however, he began embracing looser compositions and bolder colors—as in this piece—for what he calls his "spirit paintings."

Straughn published "Images in the Smoke: Native American Myths" (2021), for which he also created all the illustrations. This painting specifically accompanies the Chickasaw account of "How Day and Night Were Divided," in which the standing bear is the spirit of the Bear (Nita’) Clan animal guide.

📷: “Bear Clan Guardian” by Lance Straughn, 2019, oil on linen, OSAC 07378

#NativeAmericanHeritageMonth

We’re rounding out the remaining days of Native American Heritage Month with a look at works in our collection by contem...
11/26/2021

We’re rounding out the remaining days of Native American Heritage Month with a look at works in our collection by contemporary indigenous artists.

Our first spotlight is on artist, culture bearer, and advocate Hillary Kempenich, who is a member of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa in North Dakota. She often strives to empower Indigenous women by amplifying their stories via her art.

This portrait is of Zitkála-Šá, also known as Gertrude Simmons Bonnin (1876–1938), a Yankton Dakota Sioux violinist, educator, author, and activist for Native American citizenship and voting rights. The piece appears in the acclaimed 2020 biographical book for children entitled, “Finish the Fight!: The Brave and Revolutionary Women Who Fought for the Right to Vote,” published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Kempenich referenced historical images of Zitkála-Šá to inform this painting and found both inspiration and parallels to her own life experiences. The inclusion of a cardinal in the scene acknowledges the translation of Zitkála-Šá’s name as “Red Bird.”

📷: “Resilience: A Portrait of Zitkála-Šá” by Hillary Kempenich, 2020, acrylic on canvas, OSAC 07383

#NativeAmericanHeritageMonth

We’re rounding out the remaining days of Native American Heritage Month with a look at works in our collection by contemporary indigenous artists.

Our first spotlight is on artist, culture bearer, and advocate Hillary Kempenich, who is a member of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa in North Dakota. She often strives to empower Indigenous women by amplifying their stories via her art.

This portrait is of Zitkála-Šá, also known as Gertrude Simmons Bonnin (1876–1938), a Yankton Dakota Sioux violinist, educator, author, and activist for Native American citizenship and voting rights. The piece appears in the acclaimed 2020 biographical book for children entitled, “Finish the Fight!: The Brave and Revolutionary Women Who Fought for the Right to Vote,” published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Kempenich referenced historical images of Zitkála-Šá to inform this painting and found both inspiration and parallels to her own life experiences. The inclusion of a cardinal in the scene acknowledges the translation of Zitkála-Šá’s name as “Red Bird.”

📷: “Resilience: A Portrait of Zitkála-Šá” by Hillary Kempenich, 2020, acrylic on canvas, OSAC 07383

#NativeAmericanHeritageMonth

When knowing your U.S. Department of the Interior makes 60-Down in today's New York Times crossword puzzle a gimme!#nytx...
11/25/2021

When knowing your U.S. Department of the Interior makes 60-Down in today's New York Times crossword puzzle a gimme!

#nytxw

When knowing your U.S. Department of the Interior makes 60-Down in today's New York Times crossword puzzle a gimme!

#nytxw

Time to #RockYourMocs! Begun in 2011, this annual celebration inspires cultural pride for American Indians and Alaska Na...
11/15/2021

Time to #RockYourMocs! Begun in 2011, this annual celebration inspires cultural pride for American Indians and Alaska Natives, showcases individual tribal identity, and honors ancestors. We’re participating virtually by sharing these incredible mocs from our Interior Museum collection!

#NativeAmericanHeritageMonth #rockyourmocs2021

📷: Six pairs of moccasins, ranging from doll and child's sizes to adult, made with hide, fur, and beads. (INTR 00634, 01191, 00670, 01146, 01229, 07328)

Time to #RockYourMocs! Begun in 2011, this annual celebration inspires cultural pride for American Indians and Alaska Natives, showcases individual tribal identity, and honors ancestors. We’re participating virtually by sharing these incredible mocs from our Interior Museum collection!

#NativeAmericanHeritageMonth #rockyourmocs2021

📷: Six pairs of moccasins, ranging from doll and child's sizes to adult, made with hide, fur, and beads. (INTR 00634, 01191, 00670, 01146, 01229, 07328)

#DidYouKnow that before there was a Veterans Administration, the U.S. Department of the Interior  managed the Bureau of ...
11/11/2021

#DidYouKnow that before there was a Veterans Administration, the U.S. Department of the Interior managed the Bureau of Pensions from 1849 to 1930? Offices were first in the Patent Office Building (what is now the Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery and American Art Museum) and then in the purpose-built Pension Building (now, home to the National Building Museum). The final offices were in our former headquarters building which today serves as the headquarters for the General Services Administration.

#VeteransDay

📷 Line drawing of the Patent Office Building, in which some of the original offices for the Bureau of Pensions were housed.

#DidYouKnow that before there was a Veterans Administration, the U.S. Department of the Interior managed the Bureau of Pensions from 1849 to 1930? Offices were first in the Patent Office Building (what is now the Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery and American Art Museum) and then in the purpose-built Pension Building (now, home to the National Building Museum). The final offices were in our former headquarters building which today serves as the headquarters for the General Services Administration.

#VeteransDay

📷 Line drawing of the Patent Office Building, in which some of the original offices for the Bureau of Pensions were housed.

Honoring all our veterans on this Veterans Day
11/11/2021

Honoring all our veterans on this Veterans Day

On Veterans Day, we say thank you to all military members who have served in our nation’s armed forces.

Our national memorials across the country honor our brave veterans and make sure that we never forget their dedication and sacrifice.

To veterans both past and present, thank you for your service.

Photo of the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial by Rick Kramer (sharetheexperience.org).

For National Bison Day we're excited to share this recent addition to the museum's collection: "Purple Plains," acrylic ...
11/06/2021

For National Bison Day we're excited to share this recent addition to the museum's collection: "Purple Plains," acrylic on canvas, 2021, by J. Dylan Cavin, an enrolled member of the Choctaw Nation. In attending college on an art scholarship, Cavin focused on painting, figure drawing, and graphic design, but he has subsequently explored photography, comic art, and tattooing as well. His philosophy? Regardless of the medium, "art is as simple and complex as making a connection to the viewer."

🎨OSAC 07374

#NationalBisonDay #NativeAmericanHeritatageMonth

For National Bison Day we're excited to share this recent addition to the museum's collection: "Purple Plains," acrylic on canvas, 2021, by J. Dylan Cavin, an enrolled member of the Choctaw Nation. In attending college on an art scholarship, Cavin focused on painting, figure drawing, and graphic design, but he has subsequently explored photography, comic art, and tattooing as well. His philosophy? Regardless of the medium, "art is as simple and complex as making a connection to the viewer."

🎨OSAC 07374

#NationalBisonDay #NativeAmericanHeritatageMonth

Happy November! Today kicks off the 5th annual #Museum30 challenge, a month-long social media event during which museums...
11/01/2021

Happy November! Today kicks off the 5th annual #Museum30 challenge, a month-long social media event during which museums across the globe are sharing artifacts, photos, and stories relating to the established set of daily prompts shown here. Head on over to our Twitter channel at https://twitter.com/InteriorMuseum to follow along!

Happy November! Today kicks off the 5th annual #Museum30 challenge, a month-long social media event during which museums across the globe are sharing artifacts, photos, and stories relating to the established set of daily prompts shown here. Head on over to our Twitter channel at https://twitter.com/InteriorMuseum to follow along!

Throughout #NativeAmericanHeritageMonth, we're excited to share objects and works of art--both historical and contempora...
11/01/2021

Throughout #NativeAmericanHeritageMonth, we're excited to share objects and works of art--both historical and contemporary--from our collection. Stay tuned!

We are proud to celebrate the traditions, languages, and stories of Native American, Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian, and Island communities and ensure their rich histories and contributions continue to thrive with each passing generation. #NativeAmericanHeritageMonth

Photo by Marian Bitsui

⌛ Hurry . . . only 1 week remains to apply to be our next intern! Our 640-hour offering is among more than 30 paid oppor...
10/18/2021

⌛ Hurry . . . only 1 week remains to apply to be our next intern! Our 640-hour offering is among more than 30 paid opportunities available at U.S. Department of the Interior offices nationwide. Application details 👉 https://preservenet.org/job/national-park-service-ncpe-internship-program-washington-d-c-dc-usa-internship-ncpe-internship-museum-collections-intern-640-hours/

📷 A museum intern gently cleans an artifact in preparation for exhibition.

⌛ Hurry . . . only 1 week remains to apply to be our next intern! Our 640-hour offering is among more than 30 paid opportunities available at U.S. Department of the Interior offices nationwide. Application details 👉 https://preservenet.org/job/national-park-service-ncpe-internship-program-washington-d-c-dc-usa-internship-ncpe-internship-museum-collections-intern-640-hours/

📷 A museum intern gently cleans an artifact in preparation for exhibition.

Did you know that there are currently more than 30 different paid internship opportunities being offered across the coun...
10/12/2021
NCPE Internships - PreserveNet

Did you know that there are currently more than 30 different paid internship opportunities being offered across the country at Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management, National Park Service, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service locales? For more info and to apply online prior to the October 25th deadline, see https://preservenet.org/ncpe-internships/.

(Specifically, the Interior Museum position's reference number is 3308b)

NCPE Internships Student Achievement | Valuable Partnerships | Training and Study | Professional Development | Networking Opportunities The National Council for Preservation Education (NCPE) is pleased to offer internships in partnership with the National Park Service (NPS) and other partner Federal...

Now accepting applications for our paid, 640-hour, collections-based internship at the U.S. Department of the Interior M...
10/06/2021

Now accepting applications for our paid, 640-hour, collections-based internship at the U.S. Department of the Interior Museum! For all the details and to apply online before the October 25th deadline, visit https://preservenet.org/job/national-park-service-ncpe-internship-program-washington-d-c-dc-usa-internship-ncpe-internship-museum-collections-intern-640-hours/

📷: Collage of 12 photos of current and former Interior Museum interns.

Now accepting applications for our paid, 640-hour, collections-based internship at the U.S. Department of the Interior Museum! For all the details and to apply online before the October 25th deadline, visit https://preservenet.org/job/national-park-service-ncpe-internship-program-washington-d-c-dc-usa-internship-ncpe-internship-museum-collections-intern-640-hours/

📷: Collage of 12 photos of current and former Interior Museum interns.

Address

1849 C St NW
Washington D.C., DC
20240

Take the orange or blue line to the Farragut West metro station. Exit on 18th Street and walk 5 blocks south.

General information

Closed Federal holidays

Opening Hours

Monday 8:30am - 4:30pm
Tuesday 8:30am - 4:30pm
Wednesday 8:30am - 4:30pm
Thursday 8:30am - 4:30pm
Friday 8:30am - 4:30pm

Telephone

(202) 208-4743

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Today is Rock Your Mocs day—a day to celebrate Indigenous culture and the significance of moccasins. All across the world, Native communities will wear and share photos of their moccasins and honor their Tribal individuality and heritage. Photo from the U.S. Department of the Interior Museum
Who wants one? In 2008, the Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS) celebrated our 75th anniversary. During that year, Heritage Documentation Programs, NPS marked the occasion with an exhibition held at the U.S. Department of the Interior Museum in Washington, DC and the exhibition catalog AMERICAN PLACE. DOWNLOAD your FREE copy of "AMERICAN PLACE: The Historic American Buildings Survey at Seventy-Five Years" which tells the story of how the architectural history of America has been recorded for (over) seventy-five years by HABS from our website athttps://www.nps.gov/hdp/habs/AmericanPlace.pdf (22.3 MB .PDF). #HABSnps #Preservation #ArchitecturalHistory #PreservationThroughDocumentation #ThisPlaceMatters #ThisPlaceMattered #HistoricPreservation #HeritageDocumentation #SavingPlaces #History #PreservationEducation
150 years ago this week, the Hayden Expedition entered what is now Yellowstone National Park. Two members of the group would be especially influential in convincing Congress to set aside the area as the country's first national park: photographer William Henry Jackson and artist Thomas Moran. Moran's paintings culminated in a large landscape of the Lower Falls of the Grand Canyon, which we are calling #BigPictureMorans. Follow the U.S. Department of the Interior Museum and Yellowstone as we follow the United States Geological Survey expedition through this remote area, giving weekly updates of what the group encountered on this epic fact-finding adventure. Click #BigPictureMorans to see all the posts, with updates coming out tomorrow, and then every Thursday this summer.
🎨🐕 Today's #ArtfulPup is at the head of a Conestoga wagon train in this circa 1936 watercolor by William Henry Jackson. In his nineties, the artist/explorer/survey photographer was commissioned to do several illustrations--including this one--for the inaugural displays at the U.S. Department of the Interior Museum in Washington, DC.
May is #HistoricPreservationMonth! Who wants one? In 2008, the Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS) celebrated our 75th anniversary. During that year, Heritage Documentation Programs, NPS marked the occasion with an exhibition held at the U.S. Department of the Interior Museum in Washington, District of Columbia and the exhibition catalog AMERICAN PLACE. DOWNLOAD your FREE copy of "AMERICAN PLACE: The Historic American Buildings Survey at Seventy-Five Years" which tells the important story of how the architectural history of America has been recorded for (over) seventy-five years by HABS from our website athttps://www.nps.gov/hdp/habs/AmericanPlace.pdf (22.3 MB .PDF). #HABSnps #Preservation #PreservationThroughDocumentation #ThisPlaceMatters #ThisPlaceMattered #HistoricPreservation #HeritageDocumentation #SavingPlaces #HistoricArchitecture #ArchitectureHistory
We can bear-ly contain our excitement for #WorldArtDay tomorrow! John Schoenherr served as a National Park Service artist in residence at Great Smoky Mountains National Park and was asked to reflect on the park’s 1,500 black bears. This piece resides U.S. Department of the Interior Museum http://ow.ly/laGH50EoIeO
Check out this beautiful painting of Fisher Towers from the archives of the U.S. Department of the Interior Museum!
Who wants one? In 2008, the Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS) celebrated our 75th anniversary. During that year, Heritage Documentation Programs, NPS marked the occasion with an exhibition held at the U.S. Department of the Interior Museum in Washington, District of Columbia and the exhibition catalog AMERICAN PLACE. DOWNLOAD your FREE copy of "AMERICAN PLACE: The Historic American Buildings Survey at Seventy-Five Years" which tells the important story of how the architectural history of America has been recorded for (over) seventy-five years by HABS from our website athttps://www.nps.gov/hdp/habs/AmericanPlace.pdf (22.3 MB .PDF). #HABSnps #Preservation #PreservationThroughDocumentation #ThisPlaceMatters #ThisPlaceMattered #HistoricPreservation #HeritageDocumentation #SavingPlaces #HistoricArchitecture #ArchitectureHistory
My time interning at the Department of the Interior was one of the best experiences of my career! I can’t believe this was 6 years ago!
Next week from U.S. Department of the Interior Museum Library, the next free Department of the Interior Library Park Ranger Speaker Series lecture, entitled "The Washington Monument: A Short History of Past, Present and Future Construction Campaigns" on Tuesday, October 27th from 1:00 - 2:00 pm ET. All that are interested are invited. Please go to the following link to request webinar registration information: https://forms.office.com/Pages/ResponsePage.aspx?id=urWTBhhLe02TQfMvQApUlFEdn8G3vZVKlnYWFjYkWjhUOEZJWjBYQVlSNjBTOEk3RTJBOVcyTE1DUi4u
Who wants one? In 2008, the Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS) celebrated our 75th anniversary. During that year, Heritage Documentation Programs, NPS marked the occasion with an exhibition held at the U.S. Department of the Interior Museum in Washington, District of Columbia and the exhibition catalog AMERICAN PLACE. DOWNLOAD your FREE copy of "AMERICAN PLACE: The Historic American Buildings Survey at Seventy-Five Years" which tells the important story of how the architectural history of America has been recorded for (over) seventy-five years by HABS from our website athttps://www.nps.gov/hdp/habs/AmericanPlace.pdf (22.3 MB .PDF). #HABSnps #Preservation #PreservationThroughDocumentation #ThisPlaceMatters #ThisPlaceMattered #HistoricPreservation #HeritageDocumentation #SavingPlaces #HistoricArchitecture #ArchitectureHistory
Who wants one? In 2008, the Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS) celebrated our 75th anniversary. During that year, Heritage Documentation Programs, NPS marked the occasion with an exhibition held at the U.S. Department of the Interior Museum in Washington and the exhibition catalog AMERICAN PLACE. DOWNLOAD your FREE copy of "AMERICAN PLACE: The Historic American Buildings Survey at Seventy-Five Years" which tells the important story of how the architectural history of America has been recorded for (over) seventy-five years by HABS from our website athttps://www.nps.gov/hdp/habs/AmericanPlace.pdf (22.3 MB .PDF). #HABSnps #Preservation #SavingPlaces #PreservationThroughDocumentation #ThisPlaceMatters #ThisPlaceMattered #HistoricPreservation #HeritageDocumentation #HistoricArchitecture #ArchitectureHistory #CulturalHeritage