Greetings from the SmithsonianA Postcard History

See how Washington, DC and Smithsonian visitors have shared their trips with others by taking a historic look at the Smithsonian through the picture postcard.

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National Museum of American History

The National Museum of American History first opened to the public in 1964 as the Museum of History and Technology. In 1980, a bill signed by President Jimmy Carter changed the museum’s name to the National Museum of American History. The postcards in this gallery show objects on display at the museum, as well as views of the building. Some objects that are now in the National Museum of American History collections, like the First Ladies’ gowns, predate the creation of NMAH. Objects like these were previously found in the collections of the Smithsonian’s United States National Museum, which was housed in what is now the National Museum of Natural History and the Arts and Industries Building. For more objects from NMAH collections, see the Arts and Industries Building Gallery.