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

Exterior of Renwick Gallery (19th c.)

August 22, 1861

The U.S. Army seizes the Corcoran Gallery of Art (today the Renwick Gallery) for use as a warehouse for storage of records and uniforms for the Quartermaster General (Montgomery Meigs) Corps. The building was designed by James Renwick, Jr. At the time it was seized, the exterior of the Gallery was virtually complete except for some decorative detail. The interior had not yet been floored or plastered.More

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