Smithsonian Institution

Smithsonian Building, The Mall, near Tenth Street and Independence Avenue SW.
NAtional 1810, Branch 15

The President of the United States Franklin Delano Roosevelt
The Vice President of the United States Harry S. Truman
The Chief Justice of the United States Harlan F. Stone
The Secretary of State Edward R. Stettinius, Jr.
The Secretary of the Treasury Henry Morgenthau, Jr.
The Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson
The Attorney General Francis Biddle
The Postmaster General Frank C. Walker
The Secretary of the Navy James Forrestal
The Secretary of the Interior Harold L. Ickes
The Secretary of Agriculture Claude R. Wickard
The Secretary of Commerce Henry A. Wallace
The Secretary of Labor Frances Perkins
The Chief Justice of the United States, Chancellor Harlan F. Stone
The Vice President of the United States Harry S. Truman
Member of the Senate Alben W. Barkley
Member of the Senate Wallace H. White, Jr.
Member of the Senate Walter F. George
Member, House of Representatives Clarence Cannon
Member, House of Representatives Edward E. Cox
Member, House of Representatives Carroll Reece
Frederic A. Delano Harvey N. Davis
Roland S. Morris Vannevar Bush
Arthur H. Compton Frederic C. Walcott
Secretary Alexander Wetmore
Administrative Assistant to the Secretary Harry W. Dorsey
Treasurer and Administrative Accountant Nicholas W. Dorsey
Chief, Editorial Division Webster P. True
Librarian Mrs. Leila F. Clark

Bureaus Under the Smithsonian Institution

Director Alexander Wetmore
Associate Director John E. Graf
Head Curators:  
     R.S. Bassler      F.M. Setzler
     C.W. Mitman      Waldo Schmidt
Director R.P. Tolman, Acting


Director Archibald C. Wenley
Assistant Director Grace Dunham Guest
Chief M.W. Stirling
Chief H.W. Dorsey, Acting
Director Loyal B. Aldrich, Acting
Assistant Director, Division of Astrophysical Research Loyal B. Aldrich
Assistant Director, Division of Radiation and Organisms Earl S. Johnston

(Under the direction of the Board of Trustees of the National Gallery of Art)
Board of Trustees
Chairman The Chief Justice of the United States
     The Secretary of State      Samuel H. Kress
     The Secretary of the Treasury      Ferdinand L. Belin
     The Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution      Duncan Phillips
       David K.E. Bruce
       Chester Dale
President Samuel H. Kress
Vice President Ferdinand L. Belin
Secretary-Treasurer Huntington Cairns
Director David E. Finley
Administrator Harry A. McBride
General Counsel Huntington Cairns
Chief Curator John Walker
Assistant Director Macgill James
Consultant Restorer Stephen S. Pichetto

Creation and Authority.--The Smithsonian Institution was created by act of Congress approved August 10, 1846 (9 Stat. 102; 20 U.S.C. 41, 50, 61), under the terms of the will of James Smithson, of London, England, who in 1829 bequeathed his fortune to the United States to found, at Washington, under the name of the "Smithsonian Institution," an establishment for the"increase and diffusion of knowledge among men." This is accomplished through scientific research, explorations, and publications.


Besides the original Smithsonian endowment, the Institution holds and administers a number of different special funds for the prosecution of specific scientific researches or for other purposes stipulated by their donors.

The library of the Smithsonian Institution (of which the Smithsonian deposit in the Library of Congress, the library of the United States National Museum, and that of the Bureau of American Ethnology are the chief units) consists mainly of scientific publications, including reports, proceedings, and transactions of the learned societies and institutions of the world. These publications number more than 900,000 volumes, pamphlets, and charts.

Organization.--The Smithsonian Institution is legally an establishment having as its members the President of the United States, the Vice President, the Chief Justice, and the members of the President's Cabinet. It is governed by a Board of Regents, consisting of the Vice President, the Chief Justice, three Members each of the United States Senate and the House of Representatives, and six citizens of the United States appointed by joint resolution of Congress. The Secretary of the Institution is its executive officer and the director of its activities.

Bureaus Under the Smithsonian Institution

United States National Museum.--This Museum is the depository of the national collections. It is especially rich in the natural science of America, including zoology, entomology, botany, geology, paleontology, archeology, ethnology, and physical anthropology, and has extensive series relating to the arts and industries, the graphic arts, and history. The great study series in the various fields of natural science form the basis for fundamental researches in pure science, upon which the structure of applied science is built. Collections in the field of history comprise art, antiquarian, military, naval, numismatic, and philatelic materials, and include many historic objects relating to the period of World War I. The arts and industries collections consist of objects relating to engineering, textiles, woods, graphic arts, and medicine, and include raw materials, processes of manufacture, and finished products. The aircraft display includes among others, historic airplanes of Langley, Wright, and Curtiss, Lindbergh's Spirit of St. Louis, and Wiley Post's Winnie Mae.

National Collection of Fine Arts.--The National Collection is the depository for those parts of the National collections relating to the fine arts not included in the National Gallery of Art. It contains, among other exhibits, the Harriet Land Johnston collection, including a number of portraits by British masters; the Ralph Cross Johnson collection of painting by Italian, French, English, Flemish, and Dutch masters; and the William T. Evans collections of paintings by contemporary American artists.

An important addition to the National Collection was made in June 1929 by the gift of John Gellatly, of New York, of his notable art collection, containing more than 150 pictures by eminent American and foreign artists, large collections of glass, jewels, oriental specimens, antique furniture, and other valuable material--the entire collection valued at several million dollars. By the terms of


the gift, the collection was brought to Washington on April 30, 1933, and is now on exhibition in the National Collection. A large additional gift was made by Mr. Gellatly in August 1930.

The Freer Gallery of Art is devoted principally to oriental fine arts. The building, the collections which it houses, and an endowment fund, were the git of the late Charles L. Freer of Detroit. Since their installation in 1920, the collections of Chinese bronzes, jades, paintings and pottery, and East Indian and Islamic arts have been importantly augmented, and filed work and other research work pursued. A large collection of the works of James McNeill Whistler and a limited group by other American painters is also present in the Freer Gallery.

Bureau of American Ethnology.--This Bureau collects and publishes information relating to the American Indians and the natives of Hawaii.

International Exchange Service.--This Service is the agency of the United States Government for the exchange of scientific, literary, and governmental publications with foreign governments, institutions, and investigators. National Zoological Park.--The Zoological Park covers an area of 175 acres and is located in the Rock Creek Valley, 2 miles north of the center of Washington. Its collection comprises about 3,000 living animals.

Astrophysical Observatory.--The Division of Astrophysical Research investigates solar radiation and other solar phenomena. The work of this Division is carried on partly in Washington, D.C., and partly at stations located on Mount Wilson and Table Mountain in California, Mount Montezuma, near Calama, Chile, and at Tyrone, N. Mex.

The Division of Radiation and Organisms was established in 1929 for the purpose of making scientific investigations relating to the effect of radiation upon the growth and life of plants and animals.

National Gallery of Art (under direction of Board of Trustees, National Gallery of Art).--The National Gallery of Art is a bureau of the Smithsonian Institution created by joint resolution of Congress approved March 24, 1937, as a result of the late Andrew W. Mellon's gift to the Nation of his important collection of works of art and a monumental gallery building located on the north side of the Mall between Fourth and Seventh Streets, Washington, D.C. THe act provides that this bureau shall be directed by a board to be known as the Trustees of the National Gallery of Art, whose duty it shall be to maintain and administer the National Gallery of Art and the site thereof. There are nine members of the Board of Trustees.

The National Gallery building, costing about $15,000,000, was erected with funds given by the late Andrew W. Mellon, under the direction and guidance of Paul Mellon, Donald D. Shepard, and David K.E. Bruce, surviving trustees of The A.W. Mellon Educational and Charitable Trust. It was designed by John Russell Pope (1874-1937), architect, Otto R. Eggers, Daniel Paul Higgins, associates, and was dedicated by the President of the United States on March 17, 1941. The building contains, in addition to the Mellon collection, the notable collection of Italian and French paintings and sculpture given to the Nation by Samuel H. Kress, and the famous collection of


paintings, sculpture, and decorative arts given by Joseph E. Widener in memory of his father, Peter A.B. Widener. Chester Dale has given a number of important paintings and has also placed on indefinite loan his outstanding collection of paintings by French nineteenth century artists. A notable accession is the large and important collection of more than 8,000 prints and drawings given by Lessing J. Rosenwald. Other prints have been given to the Gallery by Ellen T. Bullard, Elisabeth Achelis, Mr. and Mrs. J. Watson Webb, David Keppel, Mrs. George Nichols, and four anonymous donors. other gifts of paintings have been received from Duncan Phillips, Mr. and Mrs. Peter H.B. Frelinghuysen, Mrs. Felix Warburg, Mrs. John W. Simpson, Mrs. Gordon Dexter, Mr. and Mrs. George W. Davison, Frederic A. Delano, Mrs. Robert Noyes, Ethelyn McKinney, Lessing J. Rosenwald, Harris Whittemore, the children of the late R. Rev. William Lawrence, Dr. Horace Binney, The W.L. and May T. Mellon Foundation, and Clarence Van Dyke Tiers. Gifts of sculpture were received from Mrs. Ralph Harman Booth, Mrs. Jesse Isidor Straus, and Mrs. John W. Simpson. The Gallery has also received as a gift the Index of American Design, consisting of more than 22,000 drawing and water colors reflecting the American tradition of design and craftsmanship in decorative art and folk art. The Index drawings were made by artists employed by the Work Projects Administration, Federal Works Agency. Another important gift to the Gallery is the Richter Archive of Illustrations on Art, containing more than 60,000 reproductions of paintings of all schools. The gift was made by Solomon R. Guggenheim of New York. The Richter Archive will provide reproductions of inestimable value to scholars working in Washington, and will help to establish a new center of scholarship in the history of painting similar to the Frick Art Reference Library in New York. In addition, important loans of paintings from the Harris Whittemore collection are on exhibition.

The act accepting Mr. Mellon's gift provides that the art collections then in the possession of the Smithsonian Institution, and heretofore designated the National Gallery of Art, should thereafter be known as the National Collection of Fine Arts.


A. Wetmore
H.W. Dorsey
Administrative Assistant to the Secretary


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