Neal V. Loving’s WR-3, shown at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Virginia, will move to the redesigned galleries on the National Mall.

The West Wing of the National Air and Space Museum Prepares to Take Flight

The Smithsonian museum reopens to the public, transforming the way we tell the story of aviation

Smithsonian Secretary S. Dillon Ripley envisioned the Anacostia museum as an outreach effort to the local community. 

What Community Means to the Smithsonian

Smithsonian museums preserve and celebrate history. Yet they have histories of their own that help connect us with Washingtonians and the world

China first sent giant pandas as a gift to the U.S. 50 years ago. Mei Xiang and Tian Tian, who arrived in 2000, are on loan until the end of 2023. 

The Wide World of Smithsonian Scientific Research

With astonishing new discoveries in the cosmos and pivotal research much closer to home, Smithsonian science proves indispensable

This commemorative sculpture by an Edo artist is one of 29 objects the Smithsonian is proposing to repatriate to Nigeria. 

Why the Smithsonian Adopted a New Policy on Ethical Collecting

For more than a century, museum artifacts were acquired in ways we no longer find acceptable. How can we repair the damage?

Jackie Robinson, seen savoring a 1956 win over Pittsburgh, debuted in the major leagues on April 15, 1947, as Brooklyn’s first baseman.

How Baseball Put Its Stamp on the American Psyche

An exhibition at the National Postal Museum examines the history of the nation’s favorite pastime

This Bushnell telescope allowed Sally Ride to gaze at her favorite constellation, Orion, and envision her future as an astronaut. 

Women Who Shaped History

How the Smithsonian Is Honoring Remarkable American Women

From a series of coins to a museum in the making, their groundbreaking achievements gain new visibility

Damage assessment mission to the Mosul Cultural Museum, 2019.

How the Smithsonian Protects Cultural Heritage Around the World

In the wake of crisis and disaster, rescue workers led by the Smithsonian step in to safeguard irreplaceable treasures

Aidan Bean installs Suchi Reddy’s AI-based artwork, “me + you,” in the central rotunda of the Arts and Industries Building. 

Futures

Secretary Lonnie Bunch on What Excites Him About the Smithsonian's New Futures Exhibition

One of Smithsonian’s most storied buildings is reopening with an eye toward humanity’s great potential

Smithsonian scientist Genevieve Noyce conducts a plant census in a wetland at the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center in Maryland.

 

How the Smithsonian Grapples With Climate Change

As a hub for research and education, the Institution is poised to help the world find solutions to the global challenge

Smithsonian Secretary S. Dillon Ripley, in 1978, stands before a portrait of a predecessor—Joseph Henry, the first Secretary.

Smithsonian 175

Secretary Lonnie Bunch on What It Takes to Lead the Smithsonian

A successful Secretary must acknowledge the Institution’s failures as well as successes—and celebrate its capacity for change

An interactive lunch counter at the African American History Museum lets visitors grapple with moral dilemmas of the civil rights movement.

Race in America

Secretary Lonnie Bunch on Why the Smithsonian Is Talking About Race

In a deeply divided moment, a new initiative aims to bring Americans together by reckoning with our racial past

Two American bison grazed in a paddock behind the Castle. A few years later, in 1891, they joined the first animals at the new National Zoo.

Smithsonian 175

Secretary Lonnie Bunch Reflects on the Smithsonian's 175th Birthday

The Institution's leader looks back on a vibrant history—and ahead to the next two museums

Each year, Smithsonian’s Tropical Research Institute hosts 1,400 scientists from across the world at its Panama facilities.

The Global Reach of the Smithsonian

Expanding the Institution's reach and relevance requires collaborating with museums and researchers around the world

In Myanmar, a scientist with Smithsonian’s Global Health Program examines the world’s smallest mammal, a bumblebee bat.

Secretary Lonnie Bunch on the Power of Research at the Smithsonian

We can accomplish more when we unite our robust scientific capabilities with our educational reach

In “Deep Time,” curators used each fossil, including the sea scorpion Eurypterus lacustris, to weave a detailed timeline of Earth’s history.

Secretary Lonnie Bunch on What Makes for a Great Museum Exhibition

A well-curated show makes the unknown feel familiar—and reveals the unexpected

Chosen for the 2021 inauguration, this 1859 painting by the African American artist Robert Duncanson depicts the promise of America.

Secretary Lonnie Bunch on Healing a Divided Nation

We must use the lessons of the past to help our country grow and move forward

The carriage that Ulysses S. Grant rode to his second inauguration is one of 900 items in the exhibition "The American Presidency."

Secretary Lonnie Bunch on the Year Ahead for Museums

After a year fraught with challenges, we must build on our strengths for a common purpose

To keep Neil Armstrong’s spacesuit from degrading, conservators designed a custom mannequin that allows air to circulate inside.

Secretary Lonnie Bunch on the Invisible Work of the Smithsonian's Conservators

From deep cleaning to painstaking repairs, caring for Smithsonian’s 155 million objects requires serious TLC—and steady hands

The National Native American Veterans Memorial, designed by Cheyenne and Arapaho artist Harvey Pratt, features a steel circle balanced on a carved drum.

Secretary Lonnie Bunch on the New Memorial to Native American Veterans

Located in front of the National Museum of the American Indian, the sculpture reminds us of the true burden of freedom

Rock legend Chuck Berry drove his 1973 Cadillac 
Eldorado onto a St. Louis stage in Hail! Hail! Rock ’n’ Roll, a 1987 documentary.

Smithsonian Secretary Lonnie Bunch on How the Institution Builds Its Collections

Finding the next awe-inspiring artifact requires flexibility, help from the community—and a healthy dose of good luck

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