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The Travelers’ Tour Through the United States featured a map of the then-24 states.

What America's First Board Game Tells Us About the Aspirations of a Young Nation

Released in 1822, the Travelers’ Tour Through the United States took players on a cross-country adventure

"I Dream of Jeannie" stars Barbara Eden and Larry Hagman

How a Bottle Served as a Living Room—and a Prison—for a 2,000-Year-Old Genie

The vessel from 1960s sitcom “I Dream of Jeannie,” now on display at the National Museum of American History, could not contain the exuberance of the beloved character

Four lionesses enjoy a drink at a watering hole after a recent rain.

Get a Taste of South Africa Through These 15 Photos of Stunning Wildlife and Vibrant Communities

From desert landscapes to glittering beaches, see what this country has to offer

Left, Rita Moreno, the Puerto Rican actress who played Anita in the 1961 film West Side Story. Right, the Italian opera singer Giulia Grisi in the 1830s.

An Absolutely Fabulous Celebration of History’s Greatest Divas

This heady, exquisitely delightful new book reveals the power behind the sequins

Looming large on Philadelphia’s Broad Street, a ten-foot-high statue—a gift to the city from the Pennsylvania Freemasons—shows young Benjamin Franklin at his printing press.

Benjamin Franklin Was the Nation’s First Newsman

Before he helped launch a revolution, Benjamin Franklin was colonial America’s leading editor and printer of novels, almanacs, soap wrappers, and everything in between

A romanticized 1920 depiction of the capture of Blackbeard, one of history's most notorious pirates

Who Were the Real Pirates of the Caribbean?

During the Golden Age of Piracy, thousands of sea dogs sought fame and fortune. But the reality of a pirate's life was less enticing than movies and television shows suggest

Jenn Colella as Carrie Chapman Catt (center) in Suffs, a new Broadway musical about the women's suffrage movement

What the Broadway Musical 'Suffs' Gets Right (and Wrong) About the History of Women's Suffrage

The new show serves as an entertaining history lesson, but even that has its creative limits

The title page of one of the Folger’s First Folios.

How the Soon-to-Reopen Folger Shakespeare Library Came to Be

A full 82 copies of Shakespeare’s First Folio will go on view as the renovated Washington, D.C. institution makes its debut

Portrait of Adèle Papin Playing the Harp, oil on canvas, c. 1799. The 17-year-old sitter, the famously beautiful daughter of a prominent family, was later rumored to be Napoleon's mistress. 

How This Caribbean-Born Artist Became the Toast of 18th-Century France

A new exhibition in Massachusetts illuminates the success of Guillaume Lethière

Rosy cheeks and warm garments are reasons to smile for this mother-daughter duo.

Celebrate Moms This Sunday and Every Day With Moving Photos of Motherhood

This Mother’s Day, these shots from around the world remind us why they’re so special

Sylvia Beach, Paul-Emile Bécat, oil on canvas, 1923

These American Women Left Their Country and Took Their Talents to Paris

A show featuring early 20th-century figures tells the story of how the city became a haven for artists

That Mary consigned some 280 Protestants to the flames is both indisputable and indefensible. But as historians have increasingly argued, this number is just one element of a much larger story that warrants contextualization.

The Myth of 'Bloody Mary,' England's First Queen

History remembers Mary I as a murderous monster who burned hundreds of her subjects at the stake, but the real story of the Tudor monarch is far more nuanced

The London National Gallery will celebrate its 200th birthday on May 10, 2024.

At 200 Years Old, the London National Gallery Is Redefining What It Means to Be a 'National' Museum

Despite its decidedly traditional art collection, the British cultural institution is adopting a contemporary approach to public outreach and accessibility

Two X-wing CAVs flew over the opening ceremony of an attraction at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Walt Disney World Resort in December 2019. 

How Engineers Created a Flying 'Star Wars' X-Wing

The starfighter-outfitted drone was the first remotely piloted aircraft of its kind and size approved by the Federal Aviation Administration for public demonstration

A number of people deserve credit for the birth of the Pop-Tart.

The Contentious History of the Pop-Tart

In the 1960s, two cereal giants raced to develop a toaster pastry

Tulips so bright they rival the sun stand tall, seemingly reaching for a beautiful blue sky.

Celebrate Spring With Terrific Tulips

These 15 Smithsonian Magazine Photo Contest images give top billing to the beautiful blooms

Lali (played by Jonah Hauer-King) and Gita (Anna Próchniak) in "The Tattooist of Auschwitz," a new mini-series based on Heather Morris' 2018 novel of the same name

'The Tattooist of Auschwitz' Demonstrates the Limits of Holocaust Fiction

A new mini-series dramatizes the best-selling 2018 novel that sparked debate over the line between history and memory

Ada "Bricktop" Smith's clubs attracted high-profile visitors, including Cole Porter, the future Edward VIII and Elizabeth Taylor.

At Her Globe-Spanning Nightclubs, This Black Entertainer Hosted a 'Who’s Who' of the 20th Century

Ada "Bricktop" Smith, who operated venues in Rome, Paris and Mexico City, brushed shoulders with the likes of Langston Hughes, Salvador Dalí and Gertrude Stein

Do Ho Suh's Public Figures is the first new sculpture to be displayed in front of the National Museum of Asian Art in over three decades.

Take a Closer Look at a Surprising New Sculpture That Rethinks Who We Put on a Pedestal

Korean artist Do Ho Suh’s “Public Figures” makes a grand arrival outside the National Museum of Asian Art

The Ghost of a Fisherman, Tsukioka Kogyo, woodblock print, 1899

Why Images of Ghosts Have Endured in Japan for Centuries

A new exhibition at the National Museum of Asian Art displays haunting, colorful woodblock prints

Photo of the day

At the local bazaar, the chocolada was delicious. Japanese Apple