The Smithsonian Institution Archives announces the launch of its new website, http://siarchives.si.edu, with new features and improved access to collections. First launched in 1995, the website has been redesigned to maximize public access to the Archives’ rich collections that document the history of the Smithsonian and its role in the arts, science and culture of the United States.
The Smithsonian Archives is the record keeper of the Smithsonian—collecting, preserving and making available the official records of the Smithsonian’s 19 museums, nine research centers and the National Zoo.
New Features on the SI Archives Web Site:
- A new Collections Search feature that provides online access to all Archives’ records cataloged to date with the ability to download media for free personal and educational use, as well as to make reference requests directly from the Archives’ collection guides
- Dedicated pages on the history of each Smithsonian museum and research center, as well as resources on the overall history of the Smithsonian, including a timeline of major events in Smithsonian history and historic pictures of the Smithsonian
- Access to more than 4,000 finding aids, which serve as guides to the Archives’ collections, and have been optimized for search to help the public more easily explore the 35,000 cubic feet of records held by the Archives
- New online forums for the public to ask reference questions and get tips on collections care and records management from Archives staff.
Access to the Archives’ resources and online exhibitions has been improved for easier navigation. In addition to providing access to all of the Archives’ cataloged collections, the new Collections Search features more than 5,000 digitized photographs and documents, including the will of James Smithson, who left his fortune to the United States in order to found the Smithsonian Institution, and letters from the Wright Brothers discussing aeronautics with former Smithsonian Secretary Samuel P. Langley.
Direct to SI Archives Website