Libraries

The Great Hall boasts works by nearly 50 American painters and sculptors.

What Makes the Library of Congress a Monument to Democracy

The world’s largest book repository has expanded far beyond its original scope to include sound recordings and digitized collections

As recent archival finds and reappraisals of well-known documents show, Liss forged her own path to freedom—and may have even spied on the British while doing so.

Women Who Shaped History

Did an Enslaved Woman Try to Warn the Americans of Benedict Arnold's Treason?

New research sheds light on Liss, who was enslaved by the family of a Culper Spy Ring leader and had ties to British spymaster John André

Nick Bergh handles a damaged wax cylinder, which the Endpoint Machine will be able to read without risk of further damage.

Good News

A Library's Mysterious Trove of Wax Cylinders Will Soon Break Its Century-Long Silence

The recordings may include mundane conversations—and some of opera’s most legendary singers

A small library on Maine's Matinicus Island is actively collecting banned books in a challenge against recent political efforts to remove controversial literature off the shelves of libraries and school curriculums.

This Small Library Off the Coast of Maine Is Collecting Banned Books

With challenges to books in the United States at a high, the Matinicus Island Library is a remote haven for controversial literature

Critics of the statue have emphasized not only to the deferential position of the two other figures but also Roosevelt’s racist beliefs and actions.

Controversial Teddy Roosevelt Statue Will Be Moved From NYC to North Dakota

The equestrian monument will leave the steps of the American Museum of Natural History, finding a new home at the Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library

Award-winning filmmaker Janay Kelley honed her skills in the video lab in Cloud901. The state-of-the-art teen learning facility is one of the biggest and best of its kind.

How Memphis Created the Nation's Most Innovative Public Library

You can play the ukulele, learn photography or record a song in a top-flight studio. You can also check out a book

Singer-songwriter and visual artist Solange has launched a free library of rare works by Black authors, available to borrow on a first-come, first-served basis.

Singer and Artist Solange Debuts Free Library of Rare Books by Black Authors

Readers in the U.S. can borrow 50 titles, including collections of poems by Gwendolyn Brooks and Langston Hughes and a sci-fi novel by Octavia Butler

The pages were disposed of as scrap and pasted into an unrelated book.

 

Cool Finds

Rediscovered Medieval Manuscript Offers New Twist on Arthurian Legend

The 13th-century pages, found by chance at a British library, show a different side of Merlin, the magician who advised Camelot's king

Visitors explore during a sneak preview of the newly renovated Harry S. Truman Presidential Museum and Museum in Independence, Missouri. The $29 million expansion took 2 years to complete.

At the Harry Truman Library and Museum, Visitors Get to Ask Themselves Where the Buck Stops

Interactive exhibitions pose questions about the decision to drop the nuclear bomb, the Red Scare, Truman's foreign policy and more

Free Little Art Galleries simulate the culture of Little Free Libraries: Take what you want and give what you can.

Innovation for Good

Why Free, Miniature Art Galleries Are Popping Up Across the U.S.

Modeled on Little Free Libraries, these pint-sized museums make art accessible during the pandemic

Max Brod, a fellow writer and the literary executor of Kafka's estate, preserved the newly digitized collection of letters, manuscripts and drawings.

You Can Now Explore an Unseen Trove of Franz Kafka's Personal Papers Online

The National Library of Israel has digitized a rare collection of the "Metamorphosis" author's letters, drawings and manuscripts

At the library of St. Mark’s Syrian Orthodox Monastery in Jerusalem, Stewart and Abouna Shimon Can, a monk, view centuries-old Syriac manuscripts.

This American Monk Travels the World to Rescue Ancient Documents From Oblivion

Father Columba Stewart has visited sites from Kathmandu to Timbuktu in his mission to safeguard precious manuscripts that tell humanity's story

Back in the Day, These Vintage Supplies Kept Libraries Running.

Smithsonian Voices

Back in the Day, These Vintage Supplies Kept Libraries Running

Modern technology replace these tools and supplies, but these drawings bring back many happy memories of checking out a book

Firefighters work to extinguish a blaze at the University of Cape Town's Jagger Reading Room on April 18.

Why the Cape Town Fire Is a Devastating Loss for South African Cultural Heritage

The inferno destroyed much of the University of Cape Town's special collections, including rare books, films, photographs and records

The Brooklyn Art Library's Sketchbook Project celebrates its 15th anniversary this year.

Virtual Travel

This Library in Brooklyn Is Home to the World's Largest Sketchbook Collection

With more than 50,000 sketchbooks, the Brooklyn Art Library in Williamsburg is still accepting submissions

Example of a new meeting background in use, featuring the Dibner Library of the History of Science and Technology.

Smithsonian Voices

Celebrate National Library Week With Bibliophilic Backgrounds for Your Virtual Meetings

Smithsonian Libraries and Archives offers book lovers these nine stylish backdrops

Fourteen contemporary artists collaborated to create a real-life version of the 1947 picture book.

Step Into the Pages of 'Goodnight Moon' With This Enchanting Exhibition

On view at Fort Makers in NYC, the show features 14 artists' reimagined interpretations of objects from the beloved children's book

Smithsonian Libraries and Archives invites you to a series of four Adopt-a-Book Salons in March and April.

Smithsonian Voices

Calling All Bibliophiles: Here's How to Adopt a Book

Smithsonian Libraries and Archives invites you to a series of four Adopt-a-Book Salons in March and April

Covid-19

The Fever That Struck New York

The front lines of a terrible epidemic, through the eyes of a young doctor profoundly touched by tragedy

A total of 380 testimonies are currently available online. The remaining 1,185 will be added later this year.

Hundreds of Holocaust Testimonies Translated, Digitized for the First Time

The Wiener Holocaust Library plans to upload its entire collection of survivor accounts by the end of the year

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