Latino American History

In August 1994, Cuba's leader Fidel Castro announced a reprieve in the enforcement of laws governing emigration (above: a homemade raft sets off from the coast near Havana on August 22, 1994) and as a result nearly 35,000 left the island.  

A Makeshift Raft Speaks to the Risks Cubans Took to Escape Their Homeland

In the mid-1990s, tens of thousands left in boats or handcrafted floats facing treacherous waters in search of a better life

A Oaxacan figure is depicted making masa with a metate, a stone tool used for grinding corn.

New Museum in California Celebrates Rich History of Mexican Cuisine

Located in downtown Los Angeles, LA Plaza Cocina is the first institution of its kind in the U.S

Pancho Villa supposedly came to Columbus because he was enraged at the author's paternal grandfather, Sam Ravel, over an arms deal gone wrong. This photo album helped the author better understand Sam.

The Photo Album That Succeeded Where Pancho Villa Failed

The revolutionary may have tried to find the author's grandfather by raiding a New Mexico village—but a friend's camera truly captured her family patriarch

The new exhibition “¡Presente! A Latino History of the United States” opens next spring in the Molina Family Latino Gallery at the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History.

A Behind-the-Scenes Look at the New National Museum of the American Latino

Years away from having a building of their own, Smithsonian staff are already at work on the exhibition ¡Presente! for next year

The Denver Art Museum's newly renovated campus, with the 50,000-square-foot Sie Welcome Center in the foreground

Denver Art Museum's Much-Anticipated Renovation Centers Indigenous Voices

The four-year, $150 million project added 30,000 square feet of exhibition space to the Colorado museum's high-rise building

This damaged floor marker, labeled “Stairwell C, Floor 102,” was recovered from the debris of the World Trade Center and is now housed in the National Museum of American History's National September 11 Collection.

September 11

Commemorate 9/11 With Free Virtual Programs, Resources From the Smithsonian

Here's how the American History Museum, the National Postal Museum and more are reflecting on the tragedy

Flight attendant Lorraine Bay carefully recorded every flight she worked in this log book, found near the wreckage of Flight 93 in Shanksville, Pennsylvania.

September 11

Thirty-One Smithsonian Artifacts That Tell the Story of 9/11

From a Pentagon rescuer's uniform to a Flight 93 crew log, these objects commemorate the 20th anniversary of a national tragedy

Simone Biles (pictured) and Naomi Osaka, both Black athletes at the top of their sports, have been vocal about their struggles with mental health.

Race in America

The Relationship Between Race and Wellness Has Never Been More Pressing

A new Smithsonian initiative kicks off this week with a virtual summit examining these urgent issues

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

In 1939, at age 13, Villa played for the East Los Angeles girls’ community team, the Garvey Stars. Over the next few years, she played for the semiprofessional Orange Lionettes team in Southern California and was signed to play in the AAGPBL in 1946.

The Record-Setting Latina Player Marge Villa Leveled the Playing Field

The Mexican American utility player in the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League receives a curtain call

The Pittsburgh Pirates All-Star Roberto Clemente was greatly admired by his Puerto Rican community (above: in 1962 coaching a local children's team) for his philanthropic pursuits on the island.

A Double Header for Béisbol Lovers

Out of the barrios, into the big leagues came Clemente, Abreu and Martínez. Now the unheralded are All-Stars in this expansive show

The new film adaptation of Lin-Manuel Miranda's In the Heights draws on the real history of Manhattan's Washington Heights neighborhood.

The Immigrant History of the NYC Neighborhood Behind 'In the Heights'

How Washington Heights, a community in upper Manhattan, became the heart of an award-winning musical and a hotly anticipated film adaptation

During the 1860s, Chinese laborers dug extensive tunnels through the Sierra Nevada mountains.

Eleven Endangered Historic Places That Tell Complex American Stories

The National Trust for Historic Preservation's 2021 list includes Mississippi hotel, Navajo trading post and California railroad tunnels

To mark its 35th birthday, American Girl rereleased its original six characters (L to R): Felicity Merriman, Kirsten Larson, Samantha Parkington, Addy Walker, Josefina Montoya and Molly McIntire.

The Enduring Nostalgia of American Girl Dolls

The beloved line of fictional characters taught children about American history and encouraged them to realize their potential

Before the highway's construction, Claiborne Avenue was known for its towering oaks.

The Highway That Sparked the Demise of an Iconic Black Street in New Orleans

Claiborne Avenue was a center of commerce and culture—until a federal interstate cut it off from the rest of the city in the 1960s

Among the offerings at the Smithsonian American Art Museum, reopening today, is the vibrant exhibition "¡Printing the Revolution! The Rise and Impact of Chicano Graphics, 1965 to Now."

The Fine Art of Political Protest

More than 100 Mexican-American works spotlight how Chicano graphic artists lift up the power of people

Yvette, East Los Angeles Car Club, City of Industry, CA, August 14, 2015

The Vibrant History of Lowrider Car Culture in L.A.

With bright paint jobs and bouncy hydraulics, the 'low and slow' rides are an expression of cultural identity for the city's Mexican American community

Photograph for a Coca-Cola ad featuring Selena, 1994, by Al Rendon.

Smithsonian Voices

How Do We Remember Selena?

On the anniversary of her 50th birthday, honoring the legacy of the first Tejana singer to top the U.S. Billboard charts with her Spanish-language album

Candida Alvarez's Estoy Bien (2017) provided the inspiration for the title of a new exhibition at El Museo del Barrio.

How a Sweeping Survey in NYC Redefines What It Means to Make 'Latinx' Art

A new triennial at El Museo del Barrio features a wide range of works by 42 artists and collectives

Emanuel Martinez, Tierra o Muerte, 1967, screenprint on manila folder

Smithsonian Voices

Chicanx Graphic Artists Inexpensively Fomented Revolution, Using Recycled Materials

For protest artists, what receives the image is often of little importance; it is the image’s political message that is vital

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