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.
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
The Smithsonian’s Second Secretary Spencer Fullerton Baird dedicated his career to creating a great national museum at the Smithsonian, the U.S. National Museum that opened in 1881. Learn about Baird and the fulfillment of his dreams.