Every Collection has a StoryThe Archives holds records that document the Smithsonian’s people, events, buildings, and research. The history of the Smithsonian is a vital part of the history of American experience, scientific exploration, and international cultural understanding.

Community

Get updates on our amazing collections!

Today in Smithsonian History

U.S. National Museum Under Construction, by Unknown, 1879, Smithsonian Archives - History Div, 2005-8427 or SA-742.

April 17, 1879

Ground is broken for construction of the U.S. National Museum building, now the Arts and Industries Building. Concrete foundations are begun on April 29th and the brick-work of the walls on May 21st. The main walls will be completed by November 1st.More

Featured Exhibit