Statement to the Smithsonian Board of Regents on Ten Years of Smithsonian Affairs

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  • Smithsonian Institution Secretary Charles G. Abbot's statement to the Board of Regents briefly describes some of the operational details and major initiatives undertaken by the Smithsonian Institution during the ten year period between 1927 and 1936. Presented on January 14, 1937, Abbot's summary is divided into eleven sections and cover various areas within the Smithsonian's jurisdiction. They are as follows, with a highlight for each topic.
  • 1. Financial: the Smithsonian received almost $12.4 million from Federal government appropriations. 2. Collections increased: almost 5 million specimens were added to the Smithsonian's collections. 3. Buildings improved permanently: the Zoological Park added new reptile, bird, small mammal, and pachyderm houses. 4. Principal new features: publication of the 12-book Smithsonian Scientific Series. 5. Principal researches (includes five widely varied areas, such as the Division of Radiation and Organisms and the Astrophysical Observatory): work from the National Museum resulted in the discovery of hundreds of new genera and over 5,000 new species of marine and land animals and plants.
  • 6. Correspondence: the Smithsonian and its branches responded to approximately 520,000 inquiries. 7. Publication: collectively, a total of 980 titles were published by the Institution and its museums. 8. Exchanges: 6.5 million packages of scientific and parliamentary publications were transmitted. 9. Exhibits: the number of visitors at Smithsonian museums totaled almost 16.4 million, and the National Zoo had well over 24 million visitors over the 10-year period. 10. Expeditions: the Smithsonian and its branches engaged in 267 expeditions to collect specimens or do research in nearly every state in the U. S., and over 30 foreign countries. 11. Library: the addition of 173,500 items brought the total collection to 860,000 items.


  • Abbot, C. G (Charles Greeley) b. 1872
  • Arts and Industries Building
  • Smithsonian Institution Libraries (SIL)
  • Smithsonian Institution Bureau of American Ethnology
  • National Museum of Natural History (U.S.)
  • Smithsonian Institution Building (Washington, D.C.)
  • Smithsonian Scientific Series
  • United States National Museum
  • Astrophysical Observatory
  • Board of Regents
  • National Zoological Park (U.S.)
  • The World Is Yours (Radio Program)
  • National Collections


Smithsonian Institution History Bibliography

Citation information

Smithsonian Institution Publications Publication 3412


Printed by Lord Baltimore Press, Baltimore, MD.

Contact information

Institutional History Division, Smithsonian Institution Archives, 600 Maryland Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20024-2520,




  • Museum attendance
  • Acquisitions
  • Scientific expeditions
  • Museum finance
  • Architecture
  • Education
  • Secretaries
  • Division of Radiation and Organisms
  • National Zoological Park (U.S.)
  • Museums
  • Management
  • Museum visitors
  • Museums--Educational aspects
  • Museums--Management
  • National Zoological Park (U.S.)--Buildings
  • Museums--Acquisitions
  • Museum publications


Washington (D.C.)

Physical description

Number of pages : 10;

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