Native: A New Museum

Usage Conditions Apply
The Smithsonian Institution Archives welcomes personal and educational use of its collections unless otherwise noted. For commercial uses, please contact

Narrow Your Results


Filter Your Results

Smithsonian Secretaries Information

Close Browse records and papers of the Smithsonian Secretaries, from 1846 until today. Pre-set filters help narrow searches by individuals who have held that office.

Expeditions Information

Close Browse records and papers documenting scientific and collecting expeditions either affiliated with the Smithsonian, or with which Smithsonian researchers participated. Pre-set filters help narrow searches by geographic regions predominantly represented in expedition records.

Professional Societies Information

Close Browse records of professional societies closely associated with the Smithsonian, that focus on areas of scientific research and museum studies. Pre-set filters help narrow searches by major topics and disciplines.


  • This glossy spread on the new National Museum of the American Indian building appears in an award-winning home entertainment and interior design magazine that also features authoritative articles on a range of subjects. Featuring photographs of some architectural details of the building and artifacts from the museum's collections, the article describes the design and content of the sixteenth Smithsonian Institution museum.
  • The author, a member of the Osage tribe of Oklahoma, opens by writing of the museum building's opening ceremonies on September 21, 2004, on the Mall in Washington, D.C. Smithsonian Secretary Lawrence Small and NMAI Director W. Richard West, Jr. led a roster of speakers addressing a crowd that included tribal representatives spanning the Americas from the Arctic region to southern Peru. These ceremonies kicked off a six-day First Americans Festival that included storytelling, music demonstrations, and a Native foods marketplace.
  • The new building is the final facility of the National Museum of the American Indian, which also includes the George Gustav Heye Center in New York City and the Cultural Resources Center in Suitland, MD. Native Americans worked as project designers and architects for the 250,000-square-foot museum, and special attention was given to blend the building into the Mall's setting while still expressing Native values and beliefs.
  • The museum building faces due east and is surrounded by landscapes indigenous to various Native regions of the Western Hemisphere. A significant feature inside the museum is a central rotunda that soars 120 feet up to a skylight. About 8,000 objects are on display in three exhibition areas: Our Universe: Traditional Knowledge Shapes Our World; Our Peoples: Giving Voice to Our Histories; Our Lives: Contemporary Life and Identities. Another gallery features 200 works by 20th Century Native artists.


  • Small, Lawrence M
  • West, W. Richard
  • National Museum of the American Indian (U.S.) Cultural Resources Center
  • National Museum of the American Indian (U.S.)
  • National Museum of the American Indian (U.S.) George Gustav Heye Center
  • Cultural Resources Center
  • National Collections
  • First Americans Festival (Washington, D.C.: 2004)


Smithsonian History Bibliography


Article appears in the "Masterworks" section of the magazine.

Contained within

Veranda Vol. XVIII, No. 5 (Journal)

Contact information

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


September-October 2004


  • Architecture
  • Architects
  • Secretaries
  • New Museums
  • Museums
  • Museum architecture
  • Museum buildings
  • Design
  • Artifacts
  • Interior architecture
  • Museum openings
  • Historians
  • Exhibitions
  • Indians of North America
  • Museum directors
  • Indians of North America--Museums
  • Buildings
  • Museums--Collection management
  • Architectural design
  • Museum exhibits


  • Mall, The (Washington, D.C.)
  • Washington (D.C.)

Physical description

Number of pages : 5; Page numbers : 72-80

Full Record

View Full Record