Archives: Charles Smithson

Smithsonian Institution’s name and unusual founding

August 17, 2017 | By Jim Stovall | No Comments | Filed in: journalism.

The Smithsonian Institution did not start out as the “nation’s attic.” It began as the storage house for the relics and collections of a British scientist whose connection with the United States is unclear. James Smithson was born in Paris in 1765, the illegitimate son of an English duke. He obtained British citizenship but traveled • Read More »

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