Johnston Bequest of Art Works

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A bequest of paintings from Mrs. Harriet Lane Johnston, James Buchanan's niece, is left to the Corcoran Gallery of Art, with the stipulation that if a gallery of art should ever be established by the United States Government, the paintings would be turned over to it.


  • Johnston, Harriet Lane 1830-1903
  • Corcoran Gallery of Art
  • National Collection of Fine Arts)
  • National Gallery of Art of the Smithsonian)
  • National Museum of American Art (U.S.)
  • Smithsonian Gallery of Art


Chronology of Smithsonian History


  • The Corcoran Gallery of Art declined the bequest under these terms, and the following year the collections were designated and established as the National Gallery of Art under the Smithsonian Institution.
  • Oehser, Paul H. The Smithsonian Institution. New York: Praeger Publishers, 1970, p. 136.
  • Annual Report of the Smithsonian Institution for the year 1904. Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1905, p. xx, 5.

Contact information

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




  • Art
  • Benefactors
  • Gifts
  • History
  • Art--History
  • Art objects

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