Smithsonian: 'The Nation's Attic' Undergoing New Federal Scrutiny

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Discusses several reviews of Smithsonian Institution policies, especially the role of Secretary S. Dillon Ripley, by the Washington Post, General Accounting Office, Senator William Proxmire, and the Smithsonian Board of Regents. Details recent controversies over grant funding, the Cooper-Hewitt Museum and growth of Smithsonian Institution programs. Discusses the Institution's strengths, especially its research programs and public programs, and tensions caused by its semi-private/semi-government nature.


  • Proxmire, William
  • Ripley, Sidney Dillon 1913-2001
  • Board of Regents
  • United States Congress
  • Washington Post
  • Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum
  • United States General Accounting Office
  • Smithsonian Research Foundation


Smithsonian Institution History Bibliography

Contained within

Science Vol. 196 (Journal)

Contact information

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


May 20, 1977


  • Public relations
  • Controversies
  • Federal Government, Relations with SI

Physical description

pp. 857-860

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