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"A Foretaste of the Exhibitions Being Created for the National Air and Space Museum" Exhibit Case

Smithsonian Institution Archives
Requested from Photographic Services Division by National Air and Space Museum.

Preview of future National Air and Space Museum exhibitions. Exhibit case located in the Smithsonian Institution Building, or Castle.

"A Foretaste of the Exhibitions Being Created for the National Air and Space Museum" Exhibit Case

Smithsonian Institution Archives
Requested from Photographic Services Division by National Air and Space Museum.

Preview of future National Air and Space Museum exhibitions. Exhibit case located in the Smithsonian Institution Building, or Castle.

"A Gentleman's Friend" mutoscope movie poster

National Museum of American History

"A Good Dog Knows What to Do"

Smithsonian Magazine

"Like most people these days who have seen Babe or caught a sheepdog trial segment on TV," writes Timothy Foote in his paean to Border collies and the wonders of sheepherding, "I have a slight grip on a few words in sheepdog-speak." There's "Away to me," which tells the dog to swing counterclockwise to head off the sheep, and "Come bye," which sends the dog into a clockwise curve instead. But it would take some time before Foote became familiar with even half the dozens of calls and whistles that handlers use to direct their Border collies in sheepherding trials.

At the Seclusival trials, on a 200-year-old farm in Shipman, Virginia, Foote spent a weekend with dog handlers and dogs, judges and observers, trying to get a feel for the sport and an understanding of its complexities. "Decisions — flank left, flank right, slow, stop, come on — are commanded and countermanded in fractions of a second. They are made by the handler, but ratified and then executed by the dog in an exquisite complexity, with the handler playing god but the dog still capable of free will."

And Border collies — famous for their intelligence and workaholic tendencies — apparently know what they're doing at least as well as their handlers. It would be nice if they could simply converse with the sheep, as Pig did in the movie Babe. But even without the benefit of language, these dogs seem preternaturally able to "read" a sheep's movements and intentions — far better than your average human, or even your better-than-average handler. As one disheartened handler confessed to Foote after a bad run: "I blew it. He read them right, but I gave him the wrong commands."

"A Gunner in the Navy"

National Museum of American History

"A Hessian Soldier"

Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum

"A Hopi Indian" Copyright 19 DEC 1906

National Anthropological Archives
Portrait of man wearing shell and turquois necklaces and earrings.

"A Hopi Man" / "Moki Man" Copyright 12 NOV 1904

National Anthropological Archives
Portrait of Hopi man wearing blanket.

"A Hopiland Beauty" Copyright 19 DEC 1906

National Anthropological Archives
Portrait of unmarried Hopi woman.

"A Kick that Didn't Miss" Mutoscope Movie Poster

National Museum of American History
Green posterboard with painted advertisement for the mutoscope motion picture "A Kick that Didn't Miss." Two attached photographs, stills from the film, show a farmer discovering and kicking a tramp underneath a tree. Mutoscope reels, by nature of their short length, often featured very simple plots explicitly revealed in the title and photographs on the poster which advertised the movies. This fact didn't seem to dissuade contemporary audiences from paying to view the features since the novelty of seeing images move was almost worth the price in itself.

The Mutoscope Collection in the National Museum of American History’s Photographic History Collection is among the most significant of its kind in any museum. Composed of 3 cameras, 13 viewers, 59 movie reels and 53 movie posters, the collection documents the early years of the most successful and influential motion picture company of the industry’s formative period. It also showcases a unique style of movie exhibition that outlasted its early competitors, existing well into the 20th century.

The American Mutoscope Company was founded in 1895 by a group of four men, Elias Koopman, Herman Casler, Henry Marvin and William Kennedy Laurie Dickson, to manufacture a motion picture viewer called the mutoscope and to produce films for exhibition. Dickson had recently left the employ of Thomas Edison, for whom he had solved the problem of “doing for the eye what the phonograph does for the ear” by inventing the modern motion picture. Casler and Dickson worked together to perfect the mutoscope, which exhibited films transferred to a series of cards mounted in the style of a flip book on a metal core, and avoided Edison’s patents with this slightly different style of exhibition. The company’s headquarters in New York City featured a rooftop studio on a turntable to ensure favorable illumination, and the short subjects made here found such success that by 1897, the Edison company’s dominance of the industry was in danger. American Mutoscope became American Mutoscope & Biograph in 1899, when the namesake projector, invented by Casler, became the most used in the industry.

Mutoscope viewers were found in many amusement areas and arcades until at least the 1960s. Their inexpensiveness and short, often comical or sensational subjects allowed the machines a far longer life than the competing Edison Kinetoscope. The company also found success in its production and projection of motion pictures, though its activity was mired by patent litigation involving Thomas Edison through the 1910s. The notable director D. W. Griffith was first hired as an actor, working with pioneering cinematographer G. W. “Billy” Bitzer, before moving behind the camera at Biograph and making 450 films for the company.

Griffith and Bitzer invented cinematographic techniques like the fade-out and iris shot, made the first film in Hollywood and launched the careers of early stars Mary Pickford and Lillian Gish. The company, simply renamed the Biograph Company in 1909, went out of business in 1928 after losing Griffith and facing a changing movie industry.

The Museum’s collection was acquired in the years between 1926 and the mid-1970s. The original mutograph camera and two later models of the camera were given to the Smithsonian in 1926 by the International Mutoscope Reel Company, which inherited Biograph’s mutoscope works and continued making the viewers and reels through the 1940s. The viewers, reels and posters in the collection were acquired for exhibition in the National Museum of American History, and were later accessioned as objects in the Photographic History Collection. Many of the mutoscope reels in the collection date to the period from 1896-1905, and show early motion picture subjects, some of which were thought to be lost films before their examination in 2008.

"A Kiss for Cinderella"

National Portrait Gallery

"A Kiss in the Dark"

National Museum of American History
This sheet music is for the song “A Kiss in the Dark,” with lyrics by B. G. De Sylvia and music by Victor Herbert. It was published by Harms, Inc. in New York, New York in 1922 It was featured in the musical comedy Orange Blossoms, with book by Fred de Grésac, lyrics by Buddy G. DeSylva, and music by Victor Herbert. The musical opened on Broadway on September 19, 1992 at the Fulton Theatre.

"A Korean Village: Its Changing Culture" Exhibit

Smithsonian Institution Archives
Requested from Photographic Services Division by Department of Anthropology.

Temporary exhibit in the foyer of the National Museum of Natural History.

"A Korean Village: Its Changing Culture" Exhibit

Smithsonian Institution Archives
Requested from Photographic Services Division by Department of Anthropology.

Temporary exhibit in the foyer of the National Museum of Natural History.

"A Korean Village: Its Changing Culture" Exhibit

Smithsonian Institution Archives
Requested from Photographic Services Division by Department of Anthropology.

Temporary exhibit in the foyer of the National Museum of Natural History.

"A La Grande Fete Aerienne"

National Air and Space Museum
A LA GRANDE FÊTE AÉRIENNE. Framed multicolor illustrated print promoting the Société de Propagande Aèrienne and an air festival. Illustration on a white background of an orange stunt plane, its wings arranged diagonally across the poster with a solid blue background and two solid white clouds. A more distant plane flys in the upper right. Below the S.P.Aé logo of wings and a roundel with an Indian chief's profile, full text in orange and red sans-serif lettering: "LA SOCIÉTÉ DE PROPAGANDE AÈRIENNE Présente Ses pilotes Ses avions A LA GRANDE FÊTE AÉRIENNE." Artist signature in upper right: Lucien Cavé. Text along the lower left border: "Editions LUCIEN CAVÉ."

Fly Now: The National Air and Space Museum Poster Collection

Throughout their history, posters have been a significant means of mass communication, often with striking visual effect. Wendy Wick Reaves, the Smithsonian Portrait Gallery Curator of Prints and Drawings, comments that "sometimes a pictorial poster is a decorative masterpiece-something I can't walk by without a jolt of aesthetic pleasure. Another might strike me as extremely clever advertising … But collectively, these 'pictures of persuasion,' as we might call them, offer a wealth of art, history, design, and popular culture for us to understand. The poster is a familiar part of our world, and we intuitively understand its role as propaganda, promotion, announcement, or advertisement."

Reaves' observations are especially relevant for the impressive array of aviation posters in the National Air and Space Museum's 1300+ artifact collection. Quite possibly the largest publicly-held collection of its kind in the United States, the National Air and Space Museum's posters focus primarily on advertising for aviation-related products and activities. Among other areas, the collection includes 19th-century ballooning exhibition posters, early 20th-century airplane exhibition and meet posters, and twentieth-century airline advertisements.

The posters in the collection represent printing technologies that include original lithography, silkscreen, photolithography, and computer-generated imagery. The collection is significant both for its aesthetic value and because it is a unique representation of the cultural, commercial and military history of aviation. The collection represents an intense interest in flight, both public and private, during a significant period of its technological and social development.

Copyright Disclosure for Orphaned Works

Whenever possible, the museum provides factual information about copyright owners and related matters in its records and other texts related to the collections. For many of the images in this collection, some of which were created for or by corporate entities that no longer exist, the museum does not own any copyrights. Therefore, it generally does not grant or deny permission to copy, distribute or otherwise use material in this collection. If identified, permission and possible fees may be required from the copyright owner independently of the museum. It is the user's obligation to determine and satisfy copyright or other use restrictions when copying, distributing or otherwise using materials found in the museum's collections. Transmission or reproduction of protected materials beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Users must make their own assessments of rights in light of their intended use.

If you have any more information about an item you've seen in the Fly Now: The National Air and Space Museum Poster Collection, or if you are a copyright owner and believe we have not properly attributed your work to you or have used it without permission, we want to hear from you. Please contact pisanod@si.edu with your contact information and a link to the relevant content.

View more information about the Smithsonian's general copyright policies at http://www.si.edu/termsofuse

"A Lande Crab" 1889 Painting/Photomechanical

National Anthropological Archives
Copies by Charles Praetorius, 1889-1893, from Original John White Watercolors in British Museum, 1585; Original Number: 56

Colored pencil Watercolor painting and photomechanical on paper mount

Crustacean

"A Little Birch Canoe - and You"

National Museum of American History
This sheet music is for the song “A Little Birch Canoe - And You,” with music by Lee S. Roberts and lyrics by J. Will Callahan. It was published by Jerome H. Remick and Company in 1918. The cover features an image of a man and woman in a canoe.

"A Little Starving Child Brought Back To Life"

National Museum of American History

"A Lot of Livin' to Do" from Bye Bye Birdie

National Museum of American History
Sheet music for the song “A Lot of Livin’ to Do” from the 1963 musical film Bye Bye Birdie starring Janet Leigh, Dick Van Dyke, Ann-Margret, and Ed Sullivan. The film, directed by George Sidney, is based on the Broadway show, which was inspired by Elvis Presley and his being drafted into the army in 1957. Charles Strouse wrote the music and Lee Adams wrote the lyrics for both the musical and the movie.

"A Love Story"

National Museum of American History
This sheet music is for the song “A Love Story,” with lyrics by Robert Henning and music by Heinz Provost. It was published by Edward Schuberth and Company in New York, New York in 1940. This song was featured in the 1939 United Artists film Intermezzo, directed by Gregory Ratoff and starred Leslie Howard and Ingrid Bergman.

"A Love Story"

National Museum of American History
The sheet music is for the song “A Love Story,” with lyrics by Robert Henning and music by Heinz Provost. It was published by Edward Schuberth and Co. in New York, New York in 1940. This song was inspired by the 1939 Selznick International Picture romantic film Intermezzo, directed by Gregory Ratoff and starred Leslie Howard and Ingrid Bergman.

"A Man Needs to Know"

National Museum of American History
This sheet music is for the song “A Man Needs to Know, ” with poem by Suellen Fried and music by Henry Tobias. It was published by Tobey Music Company in New York, New York in 1968.

"A Message from Mars"

National Museum of American History
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