The National Museum of American History in Washington spent much of 2020 shuttered but director Anthea Hartig says its work has not stopped

Anthea Hartig calls it “putting the big bear into hibernation”.

The Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of American History in Washington, boasting more than 1.8m objects over 800,000 square feet, can draw 10,000 visitors on a good day and usually closes only on 25 December. But this year a museum dedicated to preserving history found itself living that history.

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