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Smithsonian Institution, National Mall, Washington, District of Columbia, USA

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Location Category ID: 58800
Added to Database: 12 August 2010
Last Edited: 12 August 2010
Address: 1000 Jefferson Drive, SW Washington, DC
Telephone: 202.633.1000
Email: info [at] si.edu (Replace [at] with @)
Opening Times: Most Smithsonian museums are open seven days a week from 10am to 5:30pm, except December 25.
Official Website: Smithsonian Institution
Other Links: Wikipedia
Latitude, Longitude: 38.88815491 , -77.02448398
Location Accuracy: 7
Tanks Previously Here: 1: Panther II Tank - National Armor and Cavalry Museum, Fort Benning, Muscogee County, Georgia, USA (Dates unknown)
2: M2A3 Light Tank - National Armor and Cavalry Museum, Fort Benning, Muscogee County, Georgia, USA (Until June 1972)
3: M1917 Six-Ton Light Tank - U.S. Army Ordnance Museum, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Harford County, Maryland, USA (Dates unknown)


The Smithsonian Institution is an educational and research institute and associated museum complex, administered and funded by the government of the United States and by funds from its endowment, contributions, and profits from its retail operations, concessions, licensing activities and magazines. Most of its facilities are located in Washington, D.C. It was founded for the “increase and diffusion” of knowledge from a bequest to the United States by the British scientist James Smithson (1765–1829), who had never visited the United States himself.
After World War I the Smithsonian collected war artefacts and exhibited them in and around the Arts and Industries Building (including an M1917 light tank) and in the rotunda of the Natural History Building. The Arts and Industries Building was built next to the original Smithsonian museum building (known as ‘The Castle’ because of its crenellated architecture). The Smithsonian’s 1919 annual report underscored the importance of “graphically illustrating the military, naval, and aerial activities not only of our own side of the conflict but of that of our opponents as well”.
A new Military History Hall opened in the Arts and Industries Building on 14 June 1958, and was divided into two sections, one on the United States Navy and Marine Corps, and one on the United States Army. A new Museum of History and Technology, now the National Museum of American History, opened on 23 January 1964. It was the end of an era for the Arts and Industries Building, which was largely taken over by the National Air Museum, for a time. Success once again led to a separate museum building, this time for the National Air and Space Museum. On 4 July 1976, the National Air and Space Museum opened on the Mall to the east of the Arts and Industries Building and quickly became the most popular museum in the world. It was at about this time that the Smithsonian’s small collection of tanks was dispersed to other museums. This may be explained by reorganisation and rationalisation of the collection ahead of the opening of the new Air and Space museum.

Location Images - Photographs and NavPix (click to expand or browse)

February 2007

Smithsonian Institution building, photo by Noclip
1: Smithsonian Institution building, photo by Noclip

Taken: 6 February 2007
Contributor: Wikimedia
Location Photo ID: 313
Added: 12 August 2010
Views: 83
Has Priority: 0
    

    

    

1920

“Tank in front of the Arts and Industries Building”, an M1917, photo from Smithsonian archive
2: “Tank in front of the Arts and Industries Building”, an ...

Taken: 1920 (Estimated)
Contributor: CRFU
Location Photo ID: 312
Added: 12 August 2010
Views: 218
Has Priority: 0