Tom Cruise revives his Top Gun role as Pete "Maverick" Mitchell in the new film arriving in theaters May 27.

'Top Gun' Is Back. But Is the Elite Navy Fighter Pilot School Really Like the Movies?

The Smithsonian’s Chris Browne flew the much-feared F-14, and as a former TOPGUN student, knows well the power of a Navy-trained fighter pilot

Clockwise from top left: Charity Adams Earley, Harriet Tubman, Edith Nourse Rogers, Lori Piestewa and Mary E. Clarke

Five Women Veterans Who Deserve to Have Army Bases Named After Them

The U.S. Army has 10 installations named after Confederate generals. Zero are named after women

American women wouldn't be able to sport 'I Voted' stickers if not for Susan B. Anthony.

Why Women Bring Their 'I Voted' Stickers to Susan B. Anthony's Grave

This year, visitors will find a clear plastic covering protecting the fragile marble headstone

A letter that tipped off authorities to the illegal conditions of the garment factory begs rescuers to work quickly and not arouse suspicion. “Don’t forget to be careful,” it concludes.

20th-Century Slavery in a California Sweatshop Was Hiding in Plain Sight

The El Monte sweatshop case exposed a web of corruption—and the enslavement of more than 70 Los Angeles-area garment workers

Cars gather outside the Montgomery County, Alabama, jail as police begin bringing in religious and political leaders indicted in the bus boycott.

How Automobiles Helped Power the Civil Rights Movement

Montgomery bus boycotters had a secret weapon: cars

A picture taken in January 1945 depicts the gate and railway of Auschwitz-Birkenau after the camp's liberation by Soviet troops.

What Happened After the Liberation of Auschwitz

Of the few who survived the Nazi camp complex, a handful returned to ensure the site couldn't be swept away into historical memory

James Corden is no common place mouser as he takes on the role of Bustopher Jones, "The Cat we all greet as he walks down the street; his coat of fastidious black."

Purrfect or A-Paw-Ling? Why 'Cats' Still Gives Some Theatergoers Paws

Experts disagree on the hit musical's merits; four of the original production’s slinky, feline costumes are held by the Smithsonian

The new book, subtitled Remarkable Objects and Stories of Strength, Ingenuity, and Vision from the National Collection includes clockwise from top left: crocheted pussyhat; Sfag-Na-Kins sanitary napkins, Black Lives Matter T-shirt; a clay pot by Hopi-Tewa potter Nampeyo and her daughter Fannie; Alice Paul's ERA charm bracelet; and a cup and saucer by designer Belle Kogan.

Smithsonian Elevates the Frequently Ignored Histories of Women

For many, the personal—tea cups, dresses, needlework and charm bracelets—really was political. A new book tells why

Florence Pugh (second from the left) plays Amy March in "Little Women"

The New ‘Little Women’ May Finally Do Justice to Its Most Controversial Character

Based on the trailer of the new adaptation of the beloved novel, Amy March seems poised to get the well-rounded portrait she deserves

The Louvre Pyramid is arguably the architect's best-known work.

I.M. Pei Dies at 102 Years Old. Here Are Some of His Essential Buildings

The architect changed the way the world sees itself

George H.W. Bush (1924-2018). Photograph by William Coupon.

Looking Back at George H.W. Bush’s Lifelong Career of Public Service

The former President, dead at 94 years old, was noteworthy for his “humanity and decency,” says a Smithsonian historian

Ad Astra per Astra by America Meredith

Meet the Little-Known Math Genius Who Helped America Reach the Stars

It’s time for Mary Golda Ross to be remembered as an aerospace pioneer

The bottle of multivitamins at left were typical of the ways Americans became addicted to amphetamines.

A Speedy History of America’s Addiction to Amphetamine

In a startling parallel to today’s opioid crisis, the drugs were liberally—and legally—prescribed despite little information on safety

The battered remnants of Fritz Koenig's "Sphere" will return to the World Trade Center site after years of exile.

The World Trade Center's Only Surviving Art Heads Home

Battered, but not broken, Fritz Koenig's "Sphere" is being reinstalled near its original location at Ground Zero

Vienna's Kunsthistorisches Museum was commissioned by a Hapsburg Emperor—and it shows.

Seven Must-See Museums in Austria

Art, music and open-air delights

This Animated Movie About Van Gogh Is Made Entirely of Oil Paintings

<i>Loving Vincent</i> will include more than 56,000 paintings

This island has been a boy's club for hundreds of years.

This Island Can Only Be Visited by Men

Okinoshima is officially an Unesco world heritage site—but tradition bans women from its shores

Paris may still be congested in 2040, but fossil fuel congestion will fall with a new ban on gas- and diesel-burning vehicles.

France May Say ‘Au Revoir’ to Fossil-Fueled Vehicles

It’s a bid to dramatically reduce the country’s carbon emissions

This familiar landscape is always in flux.

Surf Through Newly Digitized Images to See Rome’s Ever-Changing History

The Eternal City is always evolving. Now, a new web resource shows how

This dwelling housed resistance to Mexico City's new Spanish conquerors.

Mexico City Dig Uncovers Traces of Aztec Resistance to Spain

For residents of Tenochtitlan, rebellion didn’t just happen on the battlefield

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