East Wing of SIB Converted to Work Areas

Usage Conditions Apply
The Smithsonian Institution Archives welcomes personal and educational use of its collections unless otherwise noted. For commercial uses, please contact photos@si.edu.


Declining the privilege of living rent-free in the Smithsonian Building, Secretary Spencer Fullerton Baird converts the east wing into offices and workrooms. Also, the previous July, he had installed a system of electric bells and telephones throughout the building, as a time-saver for persons communicating among the various offices and workrooms.


  • Baird, Spencer Fullerton 1823-1887
  • Smithsonian Institution Building (Washington, D.C.)
  • Smithsonian Institution Building East Wing


Chronology of Smithsonian History


  • The Board of Regents, in their January 17th, 1879 meeting, vote to allow Baird $100. a month for rent, fuel, gas, etc. since he relinquished the Henry apartments for the use of the Institution.
  • Goode, George Brown, ed. The Smithsonian Institution, 1846-1896, The History of Its First Half Century. Washington, D.C.: De Vinne Press, 1897., p. 839
  • Annual Report of the Smithsonian Institution for the year 1878, p. 11, 142

Contact information

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


December 15, 1878


  • Architecture
  • Electricity
  • Telephone
  • Secretaries
  • Repair and reconstruction
  • Buildings
  • Buildings--Repair and reconstruction

Full Record

View Full Record