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Smithsonian Institution Archives

Smithsonian Institution Archives The Smithsonian Institution Archives, part of the Smithsonian Libraries and Archives, collects, pres Welcome to the Smithsonian Institution Archives' (SIA) page.

We hope you'll join us here on Facebook and check out our profiles on Flickr and SIA's official blog, THE BIGGER PICTURE: http://siarchives.si.edu/blog. We hope you’ll contribute to this interactive forum and to our ongoing conversation about the work we do to further the Smithsonian's mission to increase and diffuse knowledge. While on-topic discussion is encouraged, we ask that you express yours

We hope you'll join us here on Facebook and check out our profiles on Flickr and SIA's official blog, THE BIGGER PICTURE: http://siarchives.si.edu/blog. We hope you’ll contribute to this interactive forum and to our ongoing conversation about the work we do to further the Smithsonian's mission to increase and diffuse knowledge. While on-topic discussion is encouraged, we ask that you express yours

Operating as usual

Here at the Archives, we treat every month like Women's History Month. Each week, we share a short blog post about a wom...
03/02/2022

Here at the Archives, we treat every month like Women's History Month.

Each week, we share a short blog post about a woman who has done impactful work at the Smithsonian. Read about Carolyn E. Jones, director of the Office of Human Resources, 1996–2003, and chair of the chair of the Smithsonian Institution Women’s Council, 1985–87 → s.si.edu/35KYkG0

The 1960s marked the beginning of a sea of change for women in the federal workplace.Read about the work of the Smithson...
03/01/2022

The 1960s marked the beginning of a sea of change for women in the federal workplace.

Read about the work of the Smithsonian Institution Women’s Council, which advocated for more equity in hiring, career advancement, and beyond → s.si.edu/393dpRw #BecauseOfHerStory

We’re celebrating the Smithsonian’s Open Access-iversary! Over the last two years, we’ve designated 5,000+ records as CC...
02/28/2022

We’re celebrating the Smithsonian’s Open Access-iversary! Over the last two years, we’ve designated 5,000+ records as CC0. They include:

🐟 scientific illustrations
👤 cartes-de-visite
📷 historic photographs

Explore → s.si.edu/3sr6IRb #SmithsonianOpenAccess

Norma Jean Colbert was on the cleaning crew at the National Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian Institution when a job ope...
02/25/2022

Norma Jean Colbert was on the cleaning crew at the National Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian Institution when a job opened for a mobile equipment operator, tasked with running large lift machines.

She became the first woman to earn a position like that at the Smithsonian. → s.si.edu/3M0Z6zu
#BlackHistoryMonth

02/22/2022

Aviators Cornelius Coffey and Willa Brown founded the Coffey School of Aeronautics to expand pilot training opportunities for African Americans in Chicago.

This Friday, 2/25, at 12 p.m. ET, we’re screening clips from an interview with Coffey in our collections. 🎟️: → s.si.edu/3HVn9NL #BlackHistoryMonth

Alphonso Lorenzo Jones joined the Smithsonian in 1924 as a chauffeur-mechanic for Secretary Walcott and his family.He cl...
02/17/2022

Alphonso Lorenzo Jones joined the Smithsonian in 1924 as a chauffeur-mechanic for Secretary Walcott and his family.

He climbed the ranks throughout his 41 years of service and retired as chief of the duplicating office. On the blog → s.si.edu/3oYtxfX #BlackHistoryMonth

02/16/2022

In the 1930s, Black men and women navigated institutionalized biases and racism to secure their pilot licenses. Fifty years later, Ted Robinson, an employee of the Federal Aviation Administration who served as the National Air and Space Museum's historian of Black aviation, interviewed a few of those groundbreakers.

On Friday, February 25, 2022, at 12 p.m. ET, Smithsonian historians Dr. Pamela Henson and Hannah Byrne will showcase the Black Aviators Videohistory Interviews conducted at the National Air and Space Museum in 1989 and in Chicago in 1990. The audience will hear aviators Janet Harmon Bragg and Cornelius Coffey share their trailblazing stories about breaking barriers and reaching the clouds. This screening will be the first time some of these videos have been made available online to the public.

🎟 🎟️ → http://s.si.edu/3HVn9NL #BHM

Happy Valentines Day! ❤️Ever heard of missed connections? In the '90s, a few Smithsonian visitors chose to shoot their s...
02/14/2022

Happy Valentines Day! ❤️

Ever heard of missed connections? In the '90s, a few Smithsonian visitors chose to shoot their shots in love by taking out personal ads in the “Glances” section of the Washington Blade, D.C.’s LGBTQ+ newspaper. → http://s.si.edu/3uKBZ69

In the early 1980s, Smithsonian conservators, specialists, and administrators formed a competitive skating group. And th...
02/09/2022

In the early 1980s, Smithsonian conservators, specialists, and administrators formed a competitive skating group. And the photos are 🔥🔥🔥.

During winters, they practiced ice dancing routines at the National Gallery of Art's Sculpture Garden rink → s.si.edu/3JiN0PV #WinterOlympics

02/08/2022

Need a new snack for Super Bowl Sunday? 🏈

In 1984, Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History docents teamed up to create a cookbook of their favorite recipes for staff. Alongside dish titles like “Castle Puddings” and “Janet's Polish In-Law's Walnut Cake” are the names of the docents and their particular specialities at the Museum.

We landed on a “Baked Mushroom Cheese Dip,” submitted by Rose Greenfield, a docent covering “Weekday Highlights.” Dairy lovers, rejoice! Everyone else, bring your digestive aid pills!

*If you want to spice up this recipe, think about adding scallions, chili powder, and more cayenne.

More on our blog ➡ s.si.edu/3HzXzOl

To mark the Smithsonian’s 150th anniversary, the Institution and the U.S. Postal Service released this commemorative sta...
02/07/2022

To mark the Smithsonian’s 150th anniversary, the Institution and the U.S. Postal Service released this commemorative stamp #OTD in 1996.

Read more about how the Smithsonian celebrated this major milestone → s.si.edu/3gLbnb8 #Smithsonian175
(📷: Smithsonian National Postal Museum)

We recently sat down with Libraries and Archives director Tamar Evangelestia-Dougherty to get to know her better. What a...
02/04/2022

We recently sat down with Libraries and Archives director Tamar Evangelestia-Dougherty to get to know her better.

What are her earliest memories of libraries and archives? Who inspires her? What energizes her? What food can she not live without? More on the blog → s.si.edu/3ur5aeo

Dr. Julian T. Euell (1929–2019) was the first African American Assistant Secretary of the Smithsonian. A jazz bassist, E...
02/03/2022

Dr. Julian T. Euell (1929–2019) was the first African American Assistant Secretary of the Smithsonian.

A jazz bassist, Euell was key in developing jazz programs at the Institution. During his time as the Assistant Secretary for Public Service between 1973 and 1982, Euell worked closely with the Smithsonian's Anacostia Community Museum, the Division of Performing Arts, and the Office of Elementary and Secondary Education.

Following his time at the Smithsonian, Euell was the director of Oakland Museum of California and the Louis Armstrong House Museum. ➡ s.si.edu/3aFN4tl

Curators across the Smithsonian wrote about 7 women to get to know this #BlackHistoryMonth.Among the trailblazers is Dr....
02/02/2022

Curators across the Smithsonian wrote about 7 women to get to know this #BlackHistoryMonth.

Among the trailblazers is Dr. Bernice Johnson Reagon, a singer, civil rights leader, and a curator at the National Museum of American History. → http://s.si.edu/34vBOjP #BecauseOfHerStory

It's #ArchivesShelfieDay, and we're feelin' ourselves. 🔥These photographs are from our on-site collections storage space...
01/28/2022

It's #ArchivesShelfieDay, and we're feelin' ourselves. 🔥

These photographs are from our on-site collections storage space in Washington, D.C. More on our storage and handling → s.si.edu/34ccXSa

Tomorrow marks the 50th anniversary of the opening of the #RenwickGallery. 🎉Before it joined the Smithsonian, the buildi...
01/27/2022

Tomorrow marks the 50th anniversary of the opening of the #RenwickGallery. 🎉

Before it joined the Smithsonian, the building had many lives. It was home to the Corcoran Gallery of Art, a warehouse for Union Army records and uniforms, and the headquarters of the U.S. Court of Claims. ➡️ s.si.edu/RenwickHistory

When fire erupted in the Smithsonian Castle on January 24, 1865, irreplaceable portraits, institutional records, and Jam...
01/24/2022

When fire erupted in the Smithsonian Castle on January 24, 1865, irreplaceable portraits, institutional records, and James Smithson’s personal effects were destroyed.

While writing in his office, Smithsonian Secretary Joseph Henry heard a crackling sound and immediately directed a maintenance worker to sound the fire alarm. A crowd of spectators gathered around the building, just as the roof of the main hall began caving in. The lecture hall, apparatus room, Board of Regents’ room, Secretary’s office, and picture gallery were all engulfed in the flames.

In her diary, Mary Henry, the eldest daughter of Joseph Henry who lived in the Castle with her family at the time, wrote, “In the space of an hour was thus destroyed the labor of years.”

Read more about the 1865 fire on our blog ➡️ s.si.edu/3qUXtLd

This photograph was taken and heavily retouched by Alexander Gardner, where he painted flames on the photographic print. It is mounted on paper. (📷:: SIA2013-08351)

01/21/2022

How are massive dinosaur mounts created at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History? What if some of the bones are missing? How do new technologies assist ​fossil preparators in their work?

To be honest, we don't know the answers to any of these questions, but Natonal Museum of Natural History experts do. Join us next Friday, January 28, 2022, at 12 p.m. ET for a screening of Putting Triceratops Together Again (2001). Following the film, we’ll sit down for a conversation with fossil preparator Steve Jabo, one of the stars of the 2001 series, preparator Michelle Pinsdorf, and FossiLab volunteer Peter Finkel. → http://s.si.edu/32lJcxL

Let’s talk about that time a chicken escaped from a National Museum of American History exhibit and crashed President Ni...
01/20/2022

Let’s talk about that time a chicken escaped from a National Museum of American History exhibit and crashed President Nixon's inaugural ball.

On January 20, 1973, thousands of people, dressed to the nines, flocked to the Museum to catch a glimpse of President Nixon. And apparently, one of the chickens that lived in the colonial barnyard exhibit in the Growth of the United States Hall also wanted in on the action.

While attendees danced the night away, one bird flew into a guest box, where it began attacking one of the partygoers. Fortunately, Smithsonian Secretary S. Dillon Ripley, himself an ornithologist, quickly came to the disgruntled guest’s rescue. He smoothed the chicken’s feathers until it calmed down and returned the bird to its exhibition. Read more about the incident → s.si.edu/3sFNS9N

(📷:SIA2009-0415 | SIA2009-0252) #OTD #OnThisDay #AmericanHistory #SmithsonianHistory #Smithsonian175

Why can it be difficult to uncover information about women who worked at the Smithsonian? ❌  they’re listed with their h...
01/19/2022
Partnering with Google Arts & Culture to Research Women in Science through Machine Learning

Why can it be difficult to uncover information about women who worked at the Smithsonian?

❌ they’re listed with their husband's name
❌ some worked without pay and weren’t included in staff lists
❌ photos of women have gone uncredited

To more fully understand women's scientific contributions, the Smithsonian recently partnered with Google Arts & Culture. Through machine learning and data visualization tools, researchers can more easily identify women's names, dates, and locations of work in our collection records and metadata. Learn more → s.si.edu/3nF2qWG #BecauseOfHerStory

By Dr. Elizabeth A. Harmon, curator of the history of Smithsonian women in science at Smithsonian Libraries and Archives

As a member of the Board of Regents, Jeannine Smith Clark served as the founding chair of the Cultural Education Committ...
01/14/2022

As a member of the Board of Regents, Jeannine Smith Clark served as the founding chair of the Cultural Education Committee, which aimed to diversify Smithsonian outreach activities.

Among its many accomplishments, the committee established an annual #MLKDay celebration in 1987.

Learn more about Clark's legacy with the Smithsonian—from her time as a docent at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History to her role as Regent Emeritus until her death in 2018. → http://s.si.edu/Clark

Think archival research is on hold while our reading room is closed? Think again!On the blog, read about the types of qu...
01/13/2022

Think archival research is on hold while our reading room is closed? Think again!

On the blog, read about the types of questions our reference archivists have been fielding and explore a few of our images that will be featured in upcoming publications. → s.si.edu/34OvioI

Did you know that there was almost a Smithsonian National Armed Forces Museum?On this day in 1965, the National Armed Fo...
01/12/2022

Did you know that there was almost a Smithsonian National Armed Forces Museum?

On this day in 1965, the National Armed Forces Museum Advisory Board, established by Congress in 1961, recommended to the Board of Regents that a National Armed Forces Museum be created by the Smithsonian Institution. However, finding a site large enough to house collections proved difficult and planning coincided with the rising unpopularity of the Vietnam War.

Read about the failed planning project on our blog → http://s.si.edu/3thYXRr

Address

Capital Gallery, 600 Maryland Ave SW, Suite 3000
Washington D.C., DC
20024

Opening Hours

Monday 9am - 5pm
Tuesday 9am - 5pm
Wednesday 9am - 5pm
Thursday 9am - 5pm
Friday 9am - 5pm

Telephone

+12026331000

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June 9: International Archives Day… Archives are a Heritage and a Sun. https://www.facebook.com/gerardo.bendecido/posts/10158314169866325
FYI: SUMMER 2021 Get Ready for a Mind-Expanding Adventure! “GOD TALKS TO ME: A Working Definition of God” This book answers Albert Einstein’s most profound question, ” I want to know God's thoughts; the rest are details." Albert Einstein https://www.facebook.com/GodTalkstoMeBook
Hey Smithsonian Institution Archives, I wish you should upload "Conquest Of The Land" and "For Want Of Plankton The Mosasaur Was Lost" on YouTube.
Que voulez-vous dire ?tt.pe
President John F. Kennedy By Artist Chester Davis
Good morning, I am looking for pictures of the soldiers during the First and Second World War of Andernach during the occupation were made! Can you help me with this ?! Thanks Andreas Heissbach
A Civil War era letter that appears to describe the January 1865 Smithsonian fire is up for auction on eBay:
Secrets of Physical Radiesthesia /The Roman Rod/
Thought you guys might enjoy this rendition of America's oldest murder ballad, Omie Wise. Happy Halloween from Banjo Earth!
I should think that, with digital technology as good as it is and widely available and easy to use, the Smithsonian could digitally catalog everything in its vast warehouses and make it all available for free online viewing. If it's just a matter of photographing it all and scanning it, I'm sure you could find hundreds of people who would volunteer to do it--including me!