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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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Today in Smithsonian History

Star-Spangled Banner, by Unknown, Date unknown, probably c. 1940, Smithsonian Archives - History Div, 35079 or MAH-35079.

December 17, 1912

The Star Spangled Banner is accessioned into the permanent collection of the U.S. National Museum. The flag was first loaned to the Museum on July 9, 1907, by Eben Appleton, grandson of Major George Armistead, the defender of Fort McHenry, where the flag flew during the War of 1812.  In 1912, Appleton decides to make the flag a permanent gift to the Museum.More

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