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Finding Aids to Official Records of the Smithsonian Institution Archives

Record Unit 383

National Museum of American History. Division of Armed Forces History

Records, 1926-1930, 1954-1988

Repository: Smithsonian Institution Archives, Washington, D.C. Contact us at osiaref@si.edu.
Creator: National Museum of American History. Division of Armed Forces History
Title: Records
Dates: 1926-1930, 1954-1988
Quantity: 10.5 cu. ft. (10 record storage boxes) (1 document box)
Collection: Record Unit 383
Language of Materials: English
Summary:

Most of the documentation in this record unit concerns the activities of the Division of Naval History but also includes some records pertaining to the Division of Armed Forces History. These records consist of correspondence and memoranda documenting research activities, planning exhibitions for the Hall of Naval History, construction of ship models such as the USS Constitution, arrangements for acquiring the gunboat Philadelphia, studies of the submarine Nautilus and the Sperry gyrocompass, presentation in 1965 of Sir Francis Drake's Cadiz Letter to the Museum, and involvement with the restoration of the USS Constellation. Also included are administrative files of the Division; public inquiries; blueprints for the Hall of Naval History; exhibition scripts; and photographs of ship models, naval vessels, exhibitions, and staff.

Historical Note

The Division of Naval History was created in 1881 as part of the Section of Historical Collections, later the Division of History, which reported to the Department of Arts and Industries as well as the Department of Anthropology within the United States National Museum until 1938. In 1939, when the Division of History was established and began reporting to the Department of Engineering and Industries, Naval History was transferred to its control. The Division of History became the Department of History in 1949. In 1957, the Division became the Department of Armed Forces History which included the Divisions of Naval History and Military History and came under the supervision of the Museum of History and Technology (MHT).

In 1969, the Department of Armed Forces History became the Department of National and Military History and, in 1978, the Department of National History. In 1980, the Division of Naval History reported to the Department of the History of Science and Technology. The Division of Naval History and the Division of Military History merged in 1985 to form the Division of Armed Forces History.

The main purpose of the Division of Naval History was to trace the historical development of the United States Navy, beginning with maritime operations during the colonial and Revolutionary War period through subsequent years of change leading to the advent of the modern navy. Research mainly focused on United States naval personnel, vessels, weapons, uniforms, insignia, navigational instruments, and flags. The Division was also involved in staff marine archeology, publishing biographies, attending conferences, and collecting maritime artifacts. Curators and staff of the Division included Mendel L. Peterson, Acting Curator, 1958-1960; Philip K. Lundeberg, Associate Curator, 1959-1961, Curator, 1962-1986, and Curator Emeritus, 1987- ; Melvin H. Jackson, Associate Curator, 1962-1965; Harold D. Langley, Curator, 1969- ; and Lee Houchins, Research Associate, 1978-1984.

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Descriptive Entry

These records include correspondence and memoranda documenting research activities, planning exhibitions for the Hall of Naval History, construction of ship models such as the USS Constitution, arrangements for acquiring the gunboat Philadelphia, studies of the submarine Nautilus and the Sperry Gyro-compass, presentation in 1965 of Sir Francis Drake's Cadiz Letter to the National Museum of History and Technology (NMHT), and involvement with the restoration of the USS Constellation. The records also consist of administrative files of the Division, public inquiries, blueprints for the Hall of Naval History, exhibition scripts, and photographs of ship models, naval vessels, exhibitions, and staff.

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Preferred Citation

Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 383, National Museum of American History. Division of Armed Forces History, Records

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Container List

Box 1

Fort Adams Foundation, 1974

Box 1 of 11

Gulbenkian Foundation, 1970, 1972

Box 1 of 11

Harding Posters, 1968-1969

Box 1 of 11

Island Resources Foundation: Tole, 1972-1977

Box 1 of 11

National Archives Conference, 1967-1971

Box 1 of 11

Sea Power Film Series: OPNAV, 1974

Box 1 of 11

Training Program for Foreign Museum Personnel, 1968

Box 1 of 11

Arts and Industries Roof, 1977

Box 1 of 11

Academic Program Notes, 1968-1969

Box 1 of 11

Administrative Structure, 1971

Box 1 of 11

American Revolution Bicentennial, 1964-1975

Box 1 of 11

A Nation of Nations, 1973-1975

Box 1 of 11

Annual Reports, 1960-1969

Box 1 of 11

Archives, 1961-1967

Box 1 of 11

Armed Forces Museum, 1961-1964

Box 1 of 11

Board of Regents Exhibits, 1960-1962

Box 1 of 11

Budget, 1960-1970

Box 1 of 11

Building Management (Future Requirements), 1961

Box 1 of 11

Committees: Education Advisory, 1964-1970

Box 1 of 11

Committees: Library, 1973

Box 1 of 11

Committees: MHT Planning Advisory, 1968

Box 1 of 11

Committees: PAEC (Professional Accomplishments Evaluation Committee), 1962-1975

Box 1 of 11

Committees: Publications Advisory, 1965-1969

Box 1 of 11

Hall of Armed Forces History, 1962-1968

Box 1 of 11

Heffernan Publication, 1966-1967

Box 1 of 11

Holdings, 1960-1966

Box 1 of 11

Inspection Reports, 1961-1964

Box 1 of 11

Lectures, 1965-1972

Box 1 of 11

Lectures: Addresses for Lecture Invitations, 1969-1973

Box 1 of 11

Lectures: General Minoru Genda, 1968-1969

Box 1 of 11

Lectures: Admiral John Hayes, 1965-1969 [includes photographs]

Box 1 of 11

Lectures: Admiral John Hofferman, 1965

Box 1 of 11

Lectures: General Victor Krulak, 1969 [includes portraits]

Box 1 of 11

Lectures: Mendel L. Peterson, 1966

Box 1 of 11

Lectures: Captain Roger Pinean, 1968

Box 1 of 11

Lectures: Captain S.W. Roskill, 1965 [includes photographs]

Box 1 of 11

Move to Museum of History and Technology, 1961-1964 [includes photographs of museum]

Box 1 of 11

Museum Computer Network: Stony Brook, 1974

Box 1 of 11

Openings, 1971

Box 1 of 11

Plans of Operations, 1967-1969

Box 1 of 11

Reports, 1972

Box 1 of 11

Requests for Permission to Photograph, 1960-1961

Box 1 of 11

Research Associate Appointments, 1965

Box 1 of 11

Senior Research Programs, 1964-1972

Box 1 of 11

SI Staff Meetings, 1964-1967

Box 1 of 11

Smithson Bicentennial, 1964-1965

Box 1 of 11

Smithsonian Year, 1968-1973

Box 1 of 11

Staff Publications, 1960-1968

Box 1 of 11

Television Scripts, 1961

Box 1 of 11

Requests for Quotations, 1963-1966

Box 1 of 11

Box 2

Committee on Completion of the Armed Forces Hall, 1978

Box 2 of 11

Blueprint: Armed Forces Hall

Box 2 of 11

Hall of Orders, Decorations and Medals

Box 2 of 11

Script: Hall of Military and Naval Heraldry

Box 2 of 11

Continental Gondola: Philadelphia (9 folders)

Box 2 of 11

Script: Battle of the Chesapeake Capes

Box 2 of 11

Colonial Heritage

Box 2 of 11

Script: Exploration and Protection of Commerce

Box 2 of 11

Coast Guard (5 folders)

Box 2 of 11

Scripts: An Era of Naval Decline

Box 2 of 11

Scripts: The Rise of the New Navy (2 folders)

Box 2 of 11

Scripts: Destruction of the Maine

Box 2 of 11

Scripts: The Spanish-American War

Box 2 of 11

Scripts: The Advent of Modern Torpedo Warfare

Box 2 of 11

Scripts: The Emergence of a World Power

Box 2 of 11

Scripts: Cruise of the Great White Fleet

Box 2 of 11

Scripts: Lure of the Arctic Challenge (2 folders)

Box 2 of 11

Scripts: The Dreadnought Era

Box 2 of 11

Scripts: American Sea Power in World War I

Box 2 of 11

Scripts: The Home Front in Two World Wars

Box 2 of 11

Scripts: Naval Disarmament and Rearmament

Box 2 of 11

Scripts: Flowering of the Two Ocean Navy (2 folders)

Box 2 of 11

Special Exhibition: A Half Century of Naval Aviation

Box 2 of 11

Case of the Month, March 1974 (2 folders)

Box 2 of 11

Labels for Half-Models, 1974

Box 2 of 11

Exhibit Proposal: The Lure of the Arctic

Box 2 of 11

Labels of Simon Lake Exhibit

Box 2 of 11

Fashioned in Steel, 1983

Box 2 of 11

Yorktown Exhibition: Photographs

Box 2 of 11

Script: Distinguished Leaders of the American Sailing Navy

Box 2 of 11

Yorktown Exhibition: Loan Agreements, 1981 (2 folders)

Box 2 of 11

Yorktown Exhibition (General), 1981 (5 folders)

Box 2 of 11

Armed Forces Service Medals

Box 2 of 11

Polar Quest

Box 2 of 11

National Maritime Bibliography

Box 2 of 11

Box 3

Inactive Correspondence, 1970-1979 (84 folders)

Box 3 of 11

Box 4

Inactive Correspondence, 1979-1986 (138 folders)

Box 4 of 11

Box 5

Inactive Correspondence, 1986-1988 (32 folders)

Box 5 of 11

Outgoing Loans, 1982

Box 5 of 11

John McCusher, 1965

Box 5 of 11

Edward Towle, 1966-1967

Box 5 of 11

Philip Lundeberg: Travel Reports, 1975-1982 (7 folders)

Box 5 of 11

Models, Aircraft, Construction of

Box 5 of 11

U.S. Navy - John Knox

Box 5 of 11

Hydro. Correspondence, 1962

Box 5 of 11

Navy Department Models to U.S.N.M.

Box 5 of 11

Portsmouth (King), 1965

Box 5 of 11

Alabama: Lee, William E.

Box 5 of 11

Models, Half, Repair of

Box 5 of 11

"Model" Correspondence, 1961

Box 5 of 11

Half Model: Photographs

Box 5 of 11

Accessions, FY 1972-1981 (2 folders)

Box 5 of 11

Annual Report, 1957-1959 (3 folders)

Box 5 of 11

Books and Other Publications, 1958-1960 (2 folders)

Box 5 of 11

Collections Committee Memos, 1974-1983 (2 folders)

Box 5 of 11

Intramural Transfers up to 1973

Box 5 of 11

Intramural Transfers Prior to FY 1962

Box 5 of 11

Library Requisitions, 1960-1963

Box 5 of 11

Inactive Loans to Smithsonian Institution

Box 5 of 11

Inactive Loans from Smithsonian Institution

Box 5 of 11

Inactive Loans to Smithsonian Institution (Naval), 1967-1974

Box 5 of 11

Box 6

Inactive Loans from Smithsonian Institution (Naval), 1968-1973

Box 6 of 11

Loans, from Smithsonian, Completed, 1961-1962

Box 6 of 11

Memoranda, Packing, 1926-1930

Box 6 of 11

Outgoing Loans, 1977-1982 (2 folders)

Box 6 of 11

Correspondence: A-Q, 1954-1988 (32 folders)

Box 6 of 11

Box 7

Correspondence: R-Z, 1954-1988 (15 folders)

Box 7 of 11

Leonard Carmichael, 1959-1963

Box 7 of 11

U.S.S. Constitution, 1964

Box 7 of 11

Chapelle, Howard I.

Box 7 of 11

Atkins and Merrill, Inc.

Box 7 of 11

Bassett-Lowke, Ltd.

Box 7 of 11

Boucher-Lewis Precision Models, Inc. (2 folders)

Box 7 of 11

Robert V. Bruckshaw (2 folders)

Box 7 of 11

George F. Campbell

Box 7 of 11

H.M.S. Falkland

Box 7 of 11

Design and Production, Inc. (2 folders)

Box 7 of 11

Box 8

Harold J. Cook

Box 8 of 11

George Draper

Box 8 of 11

Merritt A. Edison, Jr.

Box 8 of 11

Kenneth A. Foote

Box 8 of 11

Jay Hanna

Box 8 of 11

Arthur G. Henning

Box 8 of 11

Floyd D. Houston

Box 8 of 11

R.S. Nevin

Box 8 of 11

Charles J. Newcomb

Box 8 of 11

John W. Parker

Box 8 of 11

J. Manfred Reiffenstein

Box 8 of 11

Richardson's Boat Yard: James B. Richardson

Box 8 of 11

Donald C. Rosencrantz

Box 8 of 11

John C. Smith

Box 8 of 11

Thomas E. Tragle

Box 8 of 11

Annual Reports, 1965-1977

Box 8 of 11

Accession Reports (Computers)

Box 8 of 11

Armed Forces Hall, 1977

Box 8 of 11

Budget, 1978-1983

Box 8 of 11

Colt Book, 1975

Box 8 of 11

Building Plans, MHT

Box 8 of 11

Calendar of Events, 1964-1971

Box 8 of 11

Committees, 1971-1976

Box 8 of 11

MHT Planning Advisory, 1968

Box 8 of 11

Search Committee for MHT Director, 1977

Box 8 of 11

Smithsonian Studies on History and Technology

Box 8 of 11

Security Committee, 1978

Box 8 of 11

Commercial Tours, 1974

Box 8 of 11

Computer Systems, 1968-1979

Box 8 of 11

Conservation Survey

Box 8 of 11

Consultants

Box 8 of 11

Curatorial Research Time

Box 8 of 11

Damage in Walls, 1976

Box 8 of 11

Department/Division Allotments

Box 8 of 11

Department Organization, 1969-1974

Box 8 of 11

Director

Box 8 of 11

NMHT: Meeting with Chairmen and Staff, 1970-1974

Box 8 of 11

Division of Naval History Achievements, 1979

Box 8 of 11

Docents Material, 1972-1974

Box 8 of 11

Grace Rogers Cooper, 1981/1982

Box 8 of 11

Scholarly Activities Committee

Box 8 of 11

Exhibits, 1975-1979

Box 8 of 11

Warship Models for Dallas Exhibit, 1984

Box 8 of 11

Fessenden Plans Project, 1977

Box 8 of 11

First Floor Planning, 1983

Box 8 of 11

Forward Planning, Program, 1979-1983

Box 8 of 11

Furlong Flag Project, 1976-1980

Box 8 of 11

Future Film Work, 1975

Box 8 of 11

Hall of Armed Forces History, 1972-1979

Box 8 of 11

Important Acquisitions in NMAH (National Museum of American History), 1974

Box 8 of 11

Inventory: Naval History, 1971-1973

Box 8 of 11

James Smithson Society, 1977-1978

Box 8 of 11

Key Control Personnel in Navel History, 1978

Box 8 of 11

Lectures at the Smithsonian: Vice-Admiral Ruge, 1964, 1974

Box 8 of 11

Lectures at the Smithsonian: Lt. David W. Waters, R.N., 1965-1966

Box 8 of 11

Legislation, Naval

Box 8 of 11

Library of Congress, 1961-1964

Box 8 of 11

Space Report, 1968

Box 8 of 11

Major Reinstallment Program, 1983

Box 8 of 11

Management Policy re: Information Resource Management, 1981

Box 8 of 11

Material for Loan to Outside Museums, 1975

Box 8 of 11

Metric System, 1978

Box 8 of 11

Museum Collections Pending, 1974

Box 8 of 11

Museum of History and Technology, 1960-1977

Box 8 of 11

Museum Support Center, 1983

Box 8 of 11

National Museum Act, 1972

Box 8 of 11

Naval History Collections Policy, 1976

Box 8 of 11

Naval History Fund, 1973-1980

Box 8 of 11

Storage Study (inventory), 1980

Box 8 of 11

Box 9

Naval History Warship Plan Trust Fund, 1982-1983

Box 9 of 11

NMHT Collections Catalog, 1972

Box 9 of 11

Notice of Research Project: Science Information Exchange, 1969-1975

Box 9 of 11

Objects Disposition Record, 1984

Box 9 of 11

Objects Processing Facilities, 1976-1981

Box 9 of 11

Office Equipment Correspondence, 1961-1962

Box 9 of 11

Outside Professional Activities of Historians, 1964

Box 9 of 11

PAEC Reviews, 1971-1981

Box 9 of 11

Pending Accessions, 1975-1983

Box 9 of 11

Planning Budget, 1974-1982 (2 folders)

Box 9 of 11

Post 1976 Exhibition Priorities, 1975

Box 9 of 11

Private Funds Account (Houchins), 1980-1982

Box 9 of 11

Procedures for Motion Picture and Television Filming at SI

Box 9 of 11

Publication Program, 1966-1977

Box 9 of 11

Reinstallation Planning, 1984

Box 9 of 11

Report of Activities (DNH), 1972-1973

Box 9 of 11

Research Council Program and Research Reports, 1960-1974

Box 9 of 11

Sales Desk (MHT), 1964-1965

Box 9 of 11

Services Provided to Individual and Organization Outside SI, 1971

Box 9 of 11

SI Book Store (McGraw-Hill), 1972-1973

Box 9 of 11

Smithsonian Council, 1969-1979

Box 9 of 11

Smithsonian Year, 1969-1980

Box 9 of 11

Special Events, 1973-1976

Box 9 of 11

Staff Publications, 1971-1977

Box 9 of 11

Statistical Data: Specimens and Photographs in Naval History, 1977

Box 9 of 11

Storage, 1958-1975

Box 9 of 11

Surplus Government Equipment, 1962

Box 9 of 11

Telephone Tours for Professional Groups, 1957-1970

Box 9 of 11

Theft Cases, 1981

Box 9 of 11

Universities Teaching Military History Courses

Box 9 of 11

USAF (United States Air Force) Academy Military History Symposium, 1969-1970

Box 9 of 11

U.S. Commission of Maritime History, 1976-1977

Box 9 of 11

UEMURA: 1978 Polar Expedition, 1977-1979 (2 folders)

Box 9 of 11

Uniform Project Naval Academy, 1961

Box 9 of 11

Organization of American States, 1967

Box 9 of 11

Organization of Military Museums of Canada, 1973

Box 9 of 11

Protocol RE Communications Media, 1970

Box 9 of 11

Society of the Oldest Inhabitants, 1963

Box 9 of 11

Southern Historical Association, 1970

Box 9 of 11

State Department: Gift Diplomacy

Box 9 of 11

Naval War College Museum, 1975

Box 9 of 11

Organization of American Historians (OAH), 1972-1976

Box 9 of 11

Project Isle La Motte, 1978

Box 9 of 11

Obituaries, 1975

Box 9 of 11

Narragansett Bay Controversy, 1972-1974

Box 9 of 11

National Endowment for Humanities, 1976

Box 9 of 11

National Treasures, 1972

Box 9 of 11

Nautical Archaeology

Box 9 of 11

Great Seaports (TV Project), 1984

Box 9 of 11

Historic Preservation Officers, 1986

Box 9 of 11

International Commission on Military History

Box 9 of 11

International Congress of Vexillology (Seventh), 1977

Box 9 of 11

Marine Corps Advisory Committee, 1971-1973

Box 9 of 11

Monuments and Memorials

Box 9 of 11

Colloquies: ICMH, 1982

Box 9 of 11

Conference Group for Central European History, 1966-1969

Box 9 of 11

Congress of Museums of Arms and Military History, 1963-1965

Box 9 of 11

Constellation Controversy, 1969-1982

Box 9 of 11

Duquesne History Forum, 1972

Box 9 of 11

Eisenhower Library, 1968

Box 9 of 11

Box 10

American and International Committees for History of WW II, 1970-1972

Box 10 of 11

American Society for Russian Naval History, 1966-1967

Box 10 of 11

American Studies, 1964-1972

Box 10 of 11

Association of "International Sail," 1968

Box 10 of 11

Bards Creek Archaeological Site, 1968

Box 10 of 11

Act for Preservation of American Antiquities [Public-209], 1978

Box 10 of 11

American Council of Learned Societies, 1964-1968

Box 10 of 11

American Association of Museums, 1966-1977

Box 10 of 11

General Flag Inquiries

Box 10 of 11

Colonial and Revolutionary Flags

Box 10 of 11

Less Than Thirteen Star Flags

Box 10 of 11

Thirteen Star and Betsy Ross, to 1975

Box 10 of 11

Thirteen Star Flags, 1981-1987

Box 10 of 11

Fourteen Star Flags

Box 10 of 11

Thirteen Star Flag and Betsy Ross Letters, 1976-1980

Box 10 of 11

Fifteen to Twenty Star Flags

Box 10 of 11

Twenty-one to Thirty-three Star Flags, 1977-1984

Box 10 of 11

Civil War Flags: Thirty-four to Thirty-six Star Flags

Box 10 of 11

Confederate Flags

Box 10 of 11

Centennial Flags: Thirty-seven to Thirty-eight Star

Box 10 of 11

Unofficial Flags: Thirty-nine to Forty-two Star

Box 10 of 11

Thirty-seven to Forty-five Star Flags, 1976-1987

Box 10 of 11

Forty-six to Fifty Star Flags

Box 10 of 11

J.L. Hudson Flag

Box 10 of 11

Hudson Flag

Box 10 of 11

Box 11

Silverfine and Great American Flag, 1979-1982

Box 11 of 11

Flag (General), 1974-1984

Box 11 of 11

Conjectural and Fanciful Flags

Box 11 of 11

Metcalf Banner, 1840

Box 11 of 11

Twenty-one Salute to Flag: June 14-July 4

Box 11 of 11

Pledge of Allegiance, 1982

Box 11 of 11

7th International Congress of Vexillology, 1977

Box 11 of 11