Swahili Coast: Exploration by French Captain Charles Guillain, 1846-1848. Part 3, Encounters and Partnerships

-+*The blog post, last of three, was written by Xavier Courouble, research assistant for Sailors and Daughters: Early Photography and the Indian Ocean, an online exhibition part of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African Art’s Connecting the Gems of the Indian Ocean: From Oman to East Africa. Charles Guillain’s three-volume work, Documents sur l’histoire, la géographie, et le commerce de l’Afrique orientale and the accompanying atlas folio of lithographs and map engravings, Voyage more »

Durable Pianos

-+*“It shows no signs whatever of the rough handling that it has received at the hands of our pupils who have used it continuously for practicing and evening amusement.” That was how J. W. Hill, M.D. described the durability of the piano purchased for Bishop Scott Academy in Portland, Oregon.

Computers and Washington

-+*Last fall, I marked the season for the harvesting of grapes to honor John Adlum, the little-known “Father of American Viticulture.” The origins of the first commercially viable vine in the American wine industry can be traced to the District of Columbia. Now, with the great interest in Alan Turing, the recent auction sale of this English mathematician’s 56-page notebook for more than a million dollars, and the success of the movie, more »

Smithsonian Libraries Observes the 70th Anniversary of V-E Day

-+*History in the Making… In addition to rare books and special collections housed in the DeWitt Clinton Ramsey Room, one of the valuable resources located in the National Air and Space Museum’s Library is its rich and diverse collection of books and journals which focus on the meteoric rise and advances in the field of aviation during World War II. May 8th marks the 70th anniversary of V-E Day, or “Victory in more »

“’Tis A Gift To Be Simple” But to Have a Splendid Garden Buy Shaker Seeds

-+*In honor of Earth Day and National Garden Month, we take a look at one of the lesser known influences in the seed and garden business – the Shaker community.

A collection of quotes for National Library Week

-+*If you’ve been following our social media posts for National Library Week (#NLW15), you may have seen a few of our favorite library and book related quotes. In case you missed them, we’ve collected them here for your viewing pleasure. For even more inspiring quotes, visit  Libraryquotes.com, a project of the American Library Association.

Planting a Nineteenth Century Garden

-+*Now that Spring has finally arrived, warmer weather is hopefully here to stay. Flowers are beginning to emerge making it the perfect time to sit outside in the garden enjoying the outdoors. Perhaps you are wondering what to plant in your garden. How about a flower with a vibrant color? Or maybe one with a softer look? April is National Garden Month and a perfect time to highlight some of the options.

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