Friday, January 15

Smithsonian of American History: Part Two

On the last day of our vacation, we had a little time left after visiting the Smithsonian of Natural History and decided to go back to the Smithsonian of American History, which is right next door.

When we entered the section we hadn't view yet, we saw this beautiful painting. Enlarge for a better look.
The boys were surprised by this primitive sewing machine. Notice the trade cards on the right. I was enthralled with those. Very interesting.

A peddler's wagon. We looked around a bit more in this area, but we had seen part of it on our previous visit, so we decided to move on.

I was very interested in the American Black History section of the museum. We saw photos of Martin Luther King and JFK. I told the boys that I was about Brandon's age when JFK was assassinated and I also well remember the assassination of Martin Luther King. There was a teenage African-American girl in that area and she asked couldn't believe that I could remember this. She asked me several questions and I enjoyed talking to her. I think she thought I must be ancient to have lived when these great men were assassinated.

It was all very interesting and the boys learned a lot here. We spend quite a bit of time in this area.
A slave child in her bedroom. The boys couldn't believe this. Of course they've been brought up in an era where all the modern conveniences are available and also in a "I need it now" mentality.
They saw corn husk brooms and read a lot about slavery. I think it was a wake-up call for them. Neither of them could understand the reason why anyone would want to own another human being. I told them it was because slaves were free labor and the slaveowners could make bigger other words MONEY.
More reading and a few more lessons.
As we left the museum, the boys wanted me to take a photo of some of the vintage items. It doesn't seem like this guy would be vintage. LOL I did think the Disney items were. They were from way back and we enjoyed seeing those as well.
We certainly enjoyed our trip and learned a lot. I do have a few photos of the drive home and will post some of those another day. I hope you've enjoyed coming along with us to Washington.


  1. Oh my, did these posts on the Smithsoian bring back memories for me. We took son when he was about Brandon's age so it was a bit ago as he is now soon to be 34! I loved every bit of it and would love to go back again, maybe with the grands this time. What a wonderful trip for your grands, I'm sure it was a real eye opener for them in so many respects. I remember when all the assasinations took place so I guess that makes me ancient too! :o) I'm sure the young lady enjoyed talking with you about things that happened back then.

    What a lovely tea set! It is so pretty and has so many pieces to go with it. One of my neices collects tea sets and I have bought her many over the years. I'm sure you will enjoy yours, we'll be looking for pictures come Easter!

  2. Many of those exhibits just bring you back in time, so you feel as if you were there. Very interesting!

  3. great postings.yeh I want and I want it now.back in the day my parents told me you want it work for it.I.E. partime jobes summer work.

  4. Fabulous, once again!! I love how you captured the slave girl in her 'bedroom'...that says so much of our dismal history of slave owners and the strife of that one culture.

    Excellent post...I love your commentary too Mary.

  5. I so thoroughly enjoyed seeing all of your pictures from your trip to Washington, really made me wish I'd been there:-) So many wonderful things to see and do! It is indeed very hard for kids these days to understand about slavery but it's also a good thing for them to learn about it. Ooooh and you also got to see C-3PO! lol I guess he is considered kind of vintage since he first appeared in Star Wars back in the 70's:-) As for the first picture of the painting...simply breathtaking!! xoxo

  6. Thanks for the tour of the Smithsonian. I really enjoyed looking at all your pictures. I well remember the day and exactly where I was when those two great men were assassinated. Guess I am ancient also. LOL

    I even remember watching the first lunar landing at school.

    God bless.

  7. So enjoyed your post. Would love to visit the Smithsonian and have all the time needed to do it justice.

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  9. Beautiful photos, Mary. The photos of the little girl are especially poignant. It was just a few weeks ago that I overheard my grandaughter talking about a book she was reading about the plantations. She mentioned the "workers" at the plantations. I asked her if she knew about these "workers" and she said something about, they are the people who worked on the plantations. I explained to her that they did indeed work - they worked very hard, but that they were not workers as we think of workers because they were slaves who had no pay for their labor and no freedom. She replied that the book called them workers. I told her whatever euphemism the book uses, what really matters is that she knows they were slaves. We must never forget this terrible period in our history.

    It must have been wonderful to have a young person ask you questions. Knowing you, I'm sure she was glad she did!


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