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An ice-diving course in Svalbard, Norway in only the tip of the Smithsonian science iceberg

Smithson (in 1816 portrait) was viewed as a dejected recluse.

A Man in Full

A new biography depicts benefactor James Smithson as an exuberant, progressive man enamored of science


Out of Africa

This month a special collection €“representing most of Africa's major artistic traditions €“goes spectacularly on view

These sequined shoes were worn by 16-year-old Judy Garland as Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz. One of several pairs used during filming, these size-five, felt-soled shoes are well-worn, suggesting they were Garland's primary pair for dancing scenes.

Treasures Trove

America's most singular sensations are at the National Air and Space Museum

The Smithsonian Castle

Eminent Domain

The Institution's Regents include the Vice President, the Chief Justice and other national leaders


Ways of Seeing

Inviting artists to help showcase its collections is just one way the Hirshhorn Museum is expanding its vision



Our fossil collection is already the world's largest. But we're in search of a complete T. rex

Sloth bears will have their own amphitheater.


This month, pandas and other exotic creatures go on view at the National Zoo's new Asia Trail

National Museum of American History

Banner Renovation

The National Museum of American History will undergo a dramatic makeover


Patent Pending

After a glorious renovation the old Patent Office Building opens its doors anew


The Maestro

A legendary test pilot celebrates his 95th birthday - and reminds us why we restore and preserve historic aircraft

Fred and Ginger quickly and precisely configure the optical fibers beneath them.

Fred and Ginger

Two robots, neither as graceful as its namesake, but no less accomplished, are among advances keeping scientists on the cutting edge

The Smithsonian Castle

Field Trip!

Education experts help children, their teachers, parents and grandparents get the most out of a museum visit - real or virtual

Ben Franklin's "ditto" suit helped convey American values to the French

Dressed-Down Democracy

Franklin's 300th birthday this month reminds us of common ideals and artifacts that reflect them—from a simple suit to an iconic lunch counter

Phoenix, a life-size model of a North Atlantic right whale, at the center of the new Sant Ocean Hall, 2008

A Whale Called Phoenix

A very large mammal will help tell an even weightier tale—about the ocean in this crowded, challenging century


One of a Kind

From the beginning, Smithsonian has looked beyond the Institution


Wealth of a Nation

An exhibition of portraits from Latin America highlights the region's many contributions to U.S. cultural life

The Outwin Boochever contest: First of its kind in the U.S.

New Faces

Artists, emerging and renowned alike, will vie to display their works in the National Portrait Gallery when it reopens next July


The Price of Ambition

From the beginning, the cost of increasing and diffusing knowledge exceeded even Smithson's generosity

An SIguide: More memory than the Apollo 11 computer—at 1/250th its size.

From the Secretary: Guiding Light

New palm-size computers show videos and maps to lead visitors around— even to a good cup of joe

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