Ceremony and reception for the Resolute desk, on exhibition at the Museum of History and Technology, now known as the National Museum of American History from 1966-1977, Image # OPA-1121.

Everything I Own

With Presidents' Day coming up on February 17th, let's take a look at historical images of presidential objects and presidential visits at the Smithsonian.

Some refer to the Smithsonian as "America's Attic." It probably earned this nickname because throughout its history, the Smithsonian has acquired artifacts, relics, paintings, personal collections, and even hair samples related to the Commander in Chief (yes, the National Museum of American History has a collection of presidential hairs!).  In another of my musically named blog posts, let's look at some of ♪"everything they owned...and wonder if they'd give everything just to have it back again."♪

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Uniform worn by George Washington in exhibit case in the United States National Museum, now known as the Arts and Industries Building, 1880, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Acc.11-006, Image no. MAH-4604.

After three years at the National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian staff move the Gilbert Stuart portraits of George and Martha Washington for shipment to the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, 1983, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 371, Image no. 95-252.

Specimens from Teddy Roosevelt's African safari being worked on in the taxidermy workroom in the new United States National Museum, now the National Museum of Natural History. The specimens were placed on display in 1913, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 371, Image no. 95-253

President and Mrs. Eisenhower at the First Ladies Gowns Exhibit, 1955, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 95, Image no. 2002-10613.

Exhibit case in the United States National Museum, now known as the Arts and Industries Building, containing Ulysses S. Grant relics, including walking sticks, swords, and medals, c. 1880, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Acc. 11-006, Image no. MAH-3790.

George Peter Alexander Healy painting of President Abraham Lincoln at the grand opening of the Donald W. Reynolds Center for American Art and Portraiture, July 1, 2006, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Acc. 11-009, Image no. 2006-19859.

Tents, used by George Washington during the Revolutionary War, set up on the grounds of the United States National Museum, now known as the Arts and Industries Building, 1880, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Acc. 11-006, Image no. MAH-4608.

Exhibit containing bust portrait of George Washington painted by Joseph Wright and numerous other Washington relics on display at the United States National Museum, now known as the Arts and Industries Building, 1880, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Acc. 11-006, Image no. MAH-4609.

George and Martha Washington impersonators near the Landsdowne Portrait at the grand opening of The Donald W. Reynolds Center for American Art and Portraiture, July 1, 2006, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Acc. 11-009, Image no. 2006-19860.

George Washington Relics on exhibit in the United States National Museum, now known as the Arts and Industries Building, 1880, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Acc. 11-006, Image no. MAH-4612.

George Washington's camp chest unpacked on display in the United States National Museum, now known as the Arts and Industries Building, 1880, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Acc. 11-006, Image no. MAH-4615.

United States National Museum staff member models military uniform worn by George Washington, 1880, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Acc. 11-006, Image no. MAH-4618.

Exhibit case containing items associated with United States presidents in the United States National Museum, now known as the Arts and Industries Building, c. 1890s, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Acc. 11-006, Image no. MAH-12912.

Bronze statue of Laddie Boy, President Warren Harding's Airedale. The inscription reads: "Laddie Boy, cast from the pennies of newsboys throughout the nation in memory of Warren Gamaliel Harding, their friend, 1923," Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 285, Image no. SIA2009-0445.

Division of Graphic Arts exhibit in Smithsonian Institution Building, or Castle. The statue of George Washington, sculpted by Horatio Greenough, is visible, c. 1921, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Acc. 11-006, Image no. MAH-34094A.

Writing desk with inkwell, used by Thomas Jefferson to write the Declaration of Independence, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Acc. 11-006, Image no. MAH-34691A.

Exhibit of china used as the State Service during the John Adams Administration, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 285, Image no. MAH-41478D.

Exhibit case containing the summer service uniform worn by President Dwight D. Eisenhower during his term as Commanding General of Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE), in the United States National Museum, now known as the Arts and Industries Building, 1957, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Acc. 11-006, Image no. MAH-44374A.

Abraham Lincoln memorabilia, including his top hat, on display at the Hall of Historic Americans, in the Musuem of History and Technology, now known as the National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 285, Image no. SIA2010-3475.

Exhibit Items at the U. S. National Museum, George Washington's Uniform, Mess Chest, and Sword, c. 1969-1983, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Acc. 549, Image no. SIA2010-3150.

Presentation of Calvin Coolidge portrait from Phi Gamma Delta fraternity to National Portrait Gallery, 1966, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Acc. 11-008, Image no. OPA-875R2-A.

Presentation of President James Monroe portrait (NPG.70.59) by painter John Vanderlyn to the National Portrait Gallery, December 2, 1970, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Acc. 11-008, Image no. OPA-1687R1-06A.

Exhibition celebrating the 150th birthday of President Abraham Lincoln at the Arts and Industries building, 1959, Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 285, Image no. SIA2009-0441.

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