Past Events


Tea with Audubon

June 10, 2009
On June 10, 2009, around 70 guests gathered for “Afternoon Tea with Audubon,” an event celebrating the gift of a double-elephant folio facsimile of John J. Audubon’s Birds of America to the Libraries. This impressive and valuable work, published by Robert E.

The Age of Wonder and the Era of Experiments

March 4, 2009
The Smithsonian Institution Libraries hosted a two-day symposium titled “The Era of Experiments and the Age of Wonder: Scientific Expansion in the 17th-19th Centuries” March 4 and 5 in the National Museum of American History.

Dibner Library Reopening

February 10, 2009
February 10, 2009 marked the Smithsonian Institution Libraries Dibner Library of the History of Science and Technology reopening celebration. This rare books library was closed for over two years as part of the National Museum of American History renovation.

“Botanica Magnifica” Featured on CBS News Sunday Morning

February 2, 2009
Botanica Magnifica is a five-volume, double elephant folio that holds 250 detailed shots of rare flowers. Most of the vibrantly-colored photographs were taken in the Smithsonian Department of Botany Research Greenhouses, located in Suitland, Md.

Art of African Exploration Exhibition Opening Reception

December 9, 2008
On December 9, 2008, the Smithsonian Institution Libraries displayed a new exhibition titled the Art of African Exploration, which showcases the Russell E. Train Africana Collection, a collection rich in visual materials.

Paint the Town REaD! 40th Anniversary Ruby Gala

October 30, 2008
The Smithsonian Institution Libraries sealed the 40thanniversary celebratory year by hosting a black-tie “Paint the Town REaD!” Ruby Gala at the Donald W.

The First Scientific American: Benjamin Franklin and the Pursuit of Genius

December 13, 2006
Dr. Joyce E.

1905: Einstein's Miraculous Year

December 13, 2005

Huygens's Ring, Cassini's Division, and Saturn's Family: The First Explorations of the Solar System

October 24, 2004
Albert Van Helden (University of Utrecht) on "Huygens's Ring, Cassini's Division, and Saturn's Family: The First Explorations of the Solar System.

The Measure of the World

November 5, 2003
"Measures matter.” This underlying theme in Professor Ken Alder’s prize-winning book The Measure of All Things: The Seven-Year Odyssey and Hidden Error that Transformed the World (2002) also informs his essay presented here as “The Measure of the World.” Professor Alder has chosen something we al

Technica Curiosa: Engineering and Magic in Early Modern Europe.

October 15, 2002
Anthony T.

Commemorating the Dibner Library’s 25th Anniversary

October 3, 2001
In October 1976, the Dibner Library of the History of Science and Technology opened its doors in what was known as the National Museum of History and Technology, now the National Museum of American History, Behring Center.

The Form and Function of Scientific Discoveries

November 16, 2000
The Dibner Library Lectures contribute immeasurably to the Smithsonian Libraries' efforts to acquaint the larger public with the valuabl

Extraterrestrial Life and Our World View at the Turn of the Millennium

May 2, 2000
In 1992, the Smithsonian Institution Libraries inaugurated a series of annual lectures on varied topics and themes, all sharing a common element of using the rich resources found in the Libraries' Dibner Library

Shifting Perspectives in History, Culture, and the Arts (Lecture Series )

March 9, 1999
Charles Brownell (Virginia Commonwealth University) on "Horrors! Changing Views of the American Victorian House."