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.

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First Ladies Exhibit in the A&I Building, by Unknown, 1955, Smithsonian Archives - History Div, MAH 43539-D.

May 24, 1955

The First Ladies' Hall reopens in the west-north range of the Arts and Industries Building after extensive renovations.  Attendees included President Dwight Eisenhower and Mamie Eisenhower, who had recently donated her inaugural dress.  The exhibit features reconstructions of eight White House rooms, decorated in period style from its earliest appearance to the present time, containing architectural details recovered from the White House during its recent renovation. The new exhibit is part of the Institution's Exhibit Modernization Program, which updated the exhibits across the Smithsonian.More

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