National Museum Draped in Mourning for Secretary Baird


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On August 20, 1887, the U.S. National Museum Building is draped in mourning for Spencer F. Baird, second Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, who passed away on August 19th. A naturalist and administrator, Baird had joined the Smithsonian staff in 1850, and also served as Commissioner of Fish and Fisheries. Baird was responsible for the planning and construction of the National Museum building, now known as the Arts and Industries Building.


  • Baird, Spencer Fullerton 1823-1887
  • Arts and Industries Building
  • United States National Museum


Chronology of Smithsonian History


Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 198, Annual Report of Superintendent of Buildings, USNM, ending December 31, 1887.

Contact information

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


August 20, 1887


  • Secretaries
  • Museum buildings
  • Deaths
  • Secretariats


Washington (D.C.)

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