CURRENT ISSUE

September 2020

Subscribe magazine covers

Features

hand pinching book illustration

The History Thief

Precious maps, books and artworks vanished from the Pittsburgh archive, and the caper’s final chapter was just written

illustration of a ship with a skull patter in the waves

Chasing the Pirates

These criminal actors threaten fragile species, forcing an international coalition to track them down

Meroe, Sudan

In the Land of Kush

The African nation's pyramids and other archaeological sites are only now emerging from the shadow of its more storied neighbor to the north

SOCIAL - Allied freighters ablaze in the harbor of Bari, Italy, after the German attack.

The Bombing and the Breakthrough

The physician who led the investigation into a deadly explosion in Italy found the truth, and some hope

Departments

Discussion

Your feedback on our coverage of bonobos and virus hunters

Lesson Plans

Committing to our educational mission means reaching people where they are

Prologue

Rollin' Along

Dive into the secret past and uncertain future of the body of water that has defined a nation

Prologue

Current Event

How Fred Newton found himself neck-deep in history

Prologue

Blanket Statements

Inspired by antique “freedom quilts,” the artist stitches encoded icons into his own textured pieces

Prologue

Daring to Face the Past

One descended from an enslaver, the other from the people he enslaved. Together, they traveled to the Deep South to learn their families' pasts

Prologue

Breathing Easy

How a brilliant quip led to a treatment that helps millions every minute

Prologue

The Writing on the Wall

A makeshift wall in Washington, D.C. speaks to a heroic struggle to overcome inequality

Ask Smithsonian

You've got questions. We've got experts