Marker Logo HMdb.org THE HISTORICAL
MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
The National Mall in Washington, District of Columbia — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Original Smithsonian Institution Building

 
 
Original Smithsonian Institution Building Marker image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, August 21, 2011
1. Original Smithsonian Institution Building Marker
Inscription.
Erected 1847-57. Designed by James Renwick, Jr. in twelfth century Romanesque style for the first offices, research laboratories, exhibits, collections, and lectures of the Smithsonian Institution. Dedicated to the increase and diffusion of knowledge among men.
 
Erected by Smithsonian Institution.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the National Historic Landmarks marker series.
 
Location. 38° 53.331′ N, 77° 1.556′ W. Marker is in The National Mall, District of Columbia, in Washington. Marker is on Jefferson Drive, SW east of 14th Street, SW (U.S. 1). Click for map. Marker is low on the east side of the building's north face. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1000 Jefferson Drive, SW, Washington DC 20560, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Joseph Henry (within shouting distance of this marker); Andrew Jackson Downing (within shouting distance of this marker); Spencer Fullerton Baird (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Enid A. Haupt Garden (about 300 feet away); Carousel on the Mall, Washington, D.C. (about 400 feet
Original Smithsonian Institution Building (the Smithsonian "Castle)" image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, August 21, 2011
2. Original Smithsonian Institution Building (the Smithsonian "Castle)"
- north face, viewed from the National Mall
away); Arts and Industries Building (about 400 feet away); Petrified Wood (about 600 feet away); Federal Grain Inspection Service (about 700 feet away). Click for a list of all markers in The National Mall.
 
Also see . . .
1. Smithsonian Institution Building. (Submitted on August 23, 2011, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.)
2. Smithsonian Folklife Festival. (Submitted on August 23, 2011, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.)
3. James Smithson - Founder of the Smithsonian Institution. (Submitted on August 23, 2011, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.)
4. Mr. Smithson Goes to Washington. (Submitted on August 23, 2011, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.)
5. James Renwick, Jr. (Submitted on August 27, 2011, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.)
 
Additional comments.
1. National Register of Historic Places:
Smithsonian Building *** (added 1966 - - #66000867)
Also known as Smithsonian Institution Building
Jefferson Dr. at 10th St., SW , Washington
Historic Significance: Event, Architecture/Engineering
Architect, builder, or engineer: Renwick,James
Architectural Style:
Original Smithsonian Institution Building image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, August 21, 2011
3. Original Smithsonian Institution Building
Registered National Landmark Plaque, 1973
Other
Area of Significance: Science, Invention, Architecture
Period of Significance: 1875-1899, 1850-1874
Owner: Federal
Historic Function: Commerce/Trade, Recreation And Culture
Historic Sub-function: Museum, Organizational
Current Function: Commerce/Trade, Recreation And Culture
Current Sub-function: Museum, Organizational

Statement of Significance (as of designation - January 12, 1965):
Designed by James Renwick and erected between 1847 and 1855, this is the finest remaining example of Norman Revival civil architecture in the country. Constructed of red Seneca sandstone, it was built to house the Smithsonian Institution, established by the generous bequest of James Smithson, English scientist and illegitimate son of the Duke of Northumberland, and chartered by Act of Congress in 1846.
    — Submitted August 22, 2011.

 
Additional keywords. The Castle; James Smithson; Ralph Rinzler; Smithsonian Folklife Festival.
 
Categories. EducationForts, CastlesLandmarks
 
Ralph Rinzler/Smithsonian Folklife Festival memorial image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, August 21, 2011
4. Ralph Rinzler/Smithsonian Folklife Festival memorial
"There is no better time, no better place to celebrate the culture of the American people and those from around the world than at the Folklife Festival on the National Mall." - Ralph Rinzler (1935-1994), Founding Director of the Smithsonian Folklife Festival
Original Smithsonian Institution Building - northwest corner, viewed from across Jefferson Drive. image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, August 21, 2011
5. Original Smithsonian Institution Building - northwest corner, viewed from across Jefferson Drive.
The Rinzler/Smithsonian Folklife Festival memorial is visible off the sidewalk, lower right.
Original Smithsonian Institution Building - viewed from the south, image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, August 21, 2011
6. Original Smithsonian Institution Building - viewed from the south,
off Independence Avenue and the Enid A. Haupt Garden.
The Crypt of James Smithson - the Institution's English founder and namesake image. Click for full size.
7. The Crypt of James Smithson - the Institution's English founder and namesake
- contained within the Original Smithsonian Institution Building.
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. This page has been viewed 647 times since then and 26 times this year. Last updated on , by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on , by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.   4, 5, 6, 7. submitted on , by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
Paid Advertisement