Federal Government Stops Providing Funds to the Smithsonian

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In December 1860, Smithsonian Secretary Joseph Henry writes to a friend that the government has stopped providing its $4,000 annual payment to the Smithsonian for the care of the national museum collections. This important source of income for the Institution is the first segment of the Smithsonian's funds to be affected by the impending Civil War.


Henry, Joseph 1797-1878


Chronology of Smithsonian History


Rothenberg, Marc, et al, eds. The Papers of Joseph Henry, Vol.10, January 1858-December 1865: The Smithsonian Years. Washington, D.C.: Science History Publications, 2004, p. 182-83.

Contact information

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


  • December 1860
  • Civil War, 1861-1865


  • Finance
  • Secretaries
  • Expenditures, Public
  • History
  • National Collections
  • Federal Government
  • Federal Government, Relations with SI


United States

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