Empress of Japan Visits Freer

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Empress Nagako of Japan visits the Freer Gallery of Art while her husband, Emperor Hirohito, visits the National Museum of Natural History. The empress views Japanese art and works by American artist James McNeill Whistler. Dr. Harold P. Stern, director of the Freer Gallery, and Mary Ripley, wife of Smithsonian Institution Secretary S. Dillon Ripley, accompany the empress on her tour. As part of the imperial couple's visit to the United States, forty works from the imperial collection, including five by the empress herself, are on display at the Smithsonian Institution Building. President Gerald Ford and First Lady Betty Ford host a state dinner for the emperor and empress in the Smithsonian Institution Building on October 3.


  • Ford, Gerald R. 7/14/1913-12/26/2006
  • Ford, Betty 1918-
  • Ripley, Sidney Dillon 1913-2001
  • Ripley, Mary Moncrieffe Livingston
  • Whistler, James McNeill 1834-1903
  • Nagako Empress, consort of Hirohito, Emperor of Japan 1903-
  • Stern, Harold P
  • Freer Gallery of Art
  • Japan Sovereign (1926-1989 : Hirohito)
  • National Museum of Natural History (U.S.)
  • Smithsonian Institution Building (Washington, D.C.)


Chronology of Smithsonian History


"Japanese Emperor, Empress Visit Smithsonian." The Smithsonian Torch (November 1975): 3.

Contact information

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


October 2, 1975


  • Art
  • Art, American
  • Visits of state
  • Royal visitors
  • Kings and rulers
  • Special events
  • Art, Japanese
  • Royal visitors--Japan



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