Record Unit 160, Smithsonian Institution, Office of American Studies, Records, 1969-1974
The Department of American Studies of the Museum of History and Technology (MHT) was established in 1965 with Wilcomb E. Washburn as Chairman. When Charles Blitzer was appointed Assistant Secretary for History and Art in 1968, responsibility for the program was transferred from MHT to his office. The Department became the Office of American Studies in 1970, and Washburn's title was changed to Director.
The Office of American Studies seeks to promote study of the material culture of the United States by sponsoring graduate studies in the field in cooperation with universities. In addition to its formal program, it also offers graduate students an opportunity to do supervised reading and research with Smithsonian staff members and to make use of the Institution's extensive collections.