Jacob Kainen: Smithsonian Curator and Artist

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Article discusses the successful efforts of Jacob Kainen, curator in the Division of Graphic Arts from 1946 to 1966, to revamp the Smithsonian Institution's Graphic Arts collections before they were moved to the Museum of History and Technology (now the National Museum of American History). The renovations were led by Smithsonian Secretary Leonard Carmichael, who saw that funds were allocated to rework exhibits and move away from the antiquated "visual storage" exhibition style formerly used. The Smithsonian had not added to its print collection in nearly 50 years; Kainen made great contributions to the improvement of the Fine Arts collection by completing acquisitions of 19th and 20th century prints. The author comments that Kainen was an artist in his own right, and that an exhibition of his paintings was being held in the National Museum of American Art at the time the article was written.


  • Kainen, Jacob
  • Carmichael, Leonard 1898-1973
  • National Museum of American Art (U.S.)
  • National Museum of American History (U.S.) (NMAH)
  • Museum of History and Technology (U.S.)
  • National Museum of American History (U.S.) Division of Graphic Arts


Smithsonian Institution History Bibliography


Article includes 2 photographs.

Contained within

Smithsonian Preservation Quarterly (Newsletter)

Contact information

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


Fall 1993


  • Art
  • Secretaries
  • Smithsonian Institution
  • Personnel management
  • Employees
  • Museums
  • Smithsonian Institution--Employees
  • Museum curators


  • Washington, D.C
  • Washington (D.C.)

Physical description

pgs. 4 & 5

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