When Was the National Museum of Natural History?

The National Museum of Natural History is a world-renowned institution that is dedicated to exploring the wonders of nature. It houses an expansive collection of more than 145 million objects that span millions of years of natural history. But when did this institution come into existence?

The Founding of the National Museum of Natural History

The National Museum of Natural History was established in 1910, under the direction of Charles D. Walcott. Walcott was a respected paleontologist and geologist who had previously served as the Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution. He envisioned a museum that would be dedicated to the study and preservation of natural history, and he worked tirelessly to make his vision a reality.

The Early Years

In its early years, the museum was housed in what is now known as the Arts and Industries Building on the National Mall. The collection was relatively small at first, but it grew rapidly as Walcott and his team acquired new specimens from around the world.

Expansion and Renovation

As the museum’s collection continued to expand, it became clear that a larger space was needed. In the 1960s, plans were made to build a new facility that would better accommodate the growing collection and provide visitors with an improved experience.

Construction on the new building began in 1974, and it took nearly ten years to complete. The new facility opened its doors to visitors in 1981, and it quickly became one of Washington D.C.’s most popular attractions.

The Impact of The National Museum Of Natural History

Since its founding over a century ago, The National Museum Of Natural History has made significant contributions to our understanding of natural history. Its vast collection has been used by scientists around the world to conduct groundbreaking research on everything from dinosaur fossils to climate change.

The museum’s exhibits have also played an essential role in educating the public about the wonders of the natural world. Visitors can explore a wide range of exhibits that showcase everything from the diversity of life on Earth to the geological forces that shape our planet.


In conclusion, The National Museum Of Natural History has been an integral part of the scientific community for over a century. Its collection and exhibits have helped us to better understand and appreciate the complexity and beauty of the natural world. If you haven’t had a chance to visit this incredible institution, be sure to add it to your list of must-see attractions.