One of the first things we saw inside (after the security check that felt somewhat like entering an airport, but not as intrusive) was a rather interesting statue of George Washington.
I enjoyed seeing a small working printing press, having seen larger ones in operation at the Cincinnati Museum Center.
But I really liked seeing a Dumbo car from Disneyland. I'm not sure if I ever rode the ride, but I certainly remember seeing it when walking past. I never visited Disneyland that often, but I remember frequently telling people that I lived two miles away from the park.
We had to visit the 1939 exhibit also. It was an interesting year in which my dad was born and World War II started. Amy remembers going there to see Dorothy's ruby slippers from the Wizard of Oz. Interestingly enough they are currently not on display while they are being restored to go in a more permanent exhibit:
The famous Ruby Slippers Judy Garland wore in the 1939 MGM film The Wizard of Oz are showing their age and need to be removed from display in February in order to prepare them for a new exhibition called “American Stories,” opening April 5. The slippers are currently on view in “1939” at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History through Feb. 22, and the museum will be open until 7:30 p.m. Feb. 18 and 19. Regular hours, 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., resume Feb. 20....The Ruby Slippers were donated anonymously to the museum in 1979 and have been on almost continuous display since. The yellow brick road will still be represented to visitors by the hat from the Scarecrow costume worn by Bolger in the film. Because of the delicate nature of that costume, the museum is rarely able to exhibit it. Visitors can also visit the websiteto see the slippers under conservation. Read the entire article at the Smithsonian's website.
I took a picture of the outside of the Star Spangled Banner exhibit, but no photography was allowed inside. There was a really interesting computer display inside, well not a display actually, but something projected on a flat surface I think. The website has an interactive version of this that you can explore from your computer called Interactive Flag.
Next we saw the Gunboat Philadelphia (I had to search the museum's website to find the name of the boat since I didn't photograph any of the signs inside the exhibit).
In October 1776, American troops in a ragtag collection of newly built boats faced an advancing line of British ships on Lake Champlain in New York. The Americans, under the command of Benedict Arnold, were forced to retreat, but not before they fought the British to a standstill. One of the American vessels, the Philadelphia, sank during the battle and rested on the bottom of the lake until 1935. It was recovered that year with much of its equipment intact and came to the Museum in 1964, complete with the 24-pound ball that sent the gunboat to the bottom.
While I might have neglected to photograph signs around the gunboat I didn't forget to take pictures of two other signs, a Museum "You are Here" map and a historical road marker. Amy gives me a hard time for photographing road markers. I'm not used to seeing too many and like to take pictures to remember what they say when I look back later. She is simply very accustomed to these markers in Virginia and practically ignores them.
Tomorrow's blog will cover the National Museum of Natural History, but you can see the whole album of DC pictures in the following slideshow: