Concept Model of Exterior and West End for the National Air Museum Building

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

Narrow Your Results


Filter Your Results

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.


Early concept model, as viewed looking southeast from Independence Avenue, S.W., shows the full length exterior of the front and west end for the new National Air Museum building (now known as the National Air and Space Museum), as designed by Gyo Obata of Hellmuth, Obata & Kassabaum. In this design the windows are shown dark. A somewhat different design was eventually used.


  • Obata, Gyo 1923-
  • National Air and Space Museum
  • National Air Museum (U.S.)


Historic Images of the Smithsonian


  • In 1958, President Eisenhower authorized the preparation of plans for the construction of a building for a National Air Museum, to be located on a site bounded by Fourth and Seventh Streets SW, Independence Avenue, and Jefferson Drive. The 1964 design by Hellmuth, Obata & Kassabaum (HOK) for "a Museum for the Space Age" was selected. However, their initial design was later modified. In July 1966, President Lyndon Johnson signed into law a bill authorizing construction of a new building for the newly-renamed National Air and Space Museum (NASM). Congressional passage of appropriations for the construction of the new museum occurred in 1971. The final design was approved in 1972 and construction began in November of 1972. The museum opened July 1, 1976
  • HOK were the architects selected. However, their original design was revised and this became the final design.
  • For the 1972 final design by Hellmuth, Obata & Kassabaum (HOK), see Neg. SIA2017-018111 through 018119, SIA2017-018122 through SIA2017-018134, and 94-2479. See also Neg. SIA2017-018095 through SIA2017-018101 for initial design by HOK. For other designs for a proposed new National Air Museum see: United States, Public Building Administration 1949; McKim, Mead & White 1955; Harbeson, Hough, Livingston & Larson 1962; and HOK's preliminary design of 1964.

Contained within

Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 07-010, Box 3, Folder 6 and Record Unit 398, Box 55, Folder 7

Contact information

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


c. 1964

Restrictions & Rights

No restrictions


  • Museum buildings
  • Design
  • Exterior architecture
  • Architects
  • Architecture
  • Models (representations)
  • Aeronautics
  • New Museums
  • Museums
  • Models
  • Architectural design
  • Architecture--Design and plans
  • Aeronautical museums
  • Architectural firms


Washington (D.C.)


  • Photographic print
  • Exterior
  • Model

ID Number

SIA2017-018099 and 94-12590

Physical description

Number of Images: 1; Color: Black and white; Size: 10w x 8h; Type of Image: Exterior, Model; Medium: Photographic Print

Full Record

View Full Record