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The Office of Collections Information and Research administers reference and online programs for the National Portrait Gallery (NPG). Resources for staff and researchers include the NPG Collections Information System; the Catalog of American Portraits (CAP), a national portrait archives maintaining images and data for nearly 200,000 portraits in public and private collections; and the NPG website, which features a search menu for both NPG and CAP collections. The portrait archives and online database provide researchers with biographical information on subjects and artists, artist attributions, provenance, bibliographic and exhibition information, related works, and images of the portraits. A costume study composed of images of dated American portraits is also available to assist researchers in estimating execution dates for undated works.

Office of Collections Information and Research interns conduct research, verifying and updating information concerning American portraits in major public and private collections in the United States and abroad. Using library and online resources, interns catalogue portraits and research sitter and artist biographies, artist attributions and copyrights, execution dates, history of ownership and exhibitions, bibliographic citations, and related works. Interns scan and digitize images and add data and images to the computer database. Training on NPG’s database provides interns with knowledge of the information system used by most of the major museums in the US. Interns also work with the archival portrait files and assist in answering research requests from curatorial staff, scholars, and the public.


Interns should have good organizational skills and attention to detail, knowledge of library research methods, familiarity with computer systems, and an interest in American history or art history.

Terms Internship is Available:
Three internship positions all terms: fall, winter/spring, and summer.


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Phone: (202) 633-8508
FAX: (202) 633-8521
Mailing Address:
(for U.S. Postal Service mail)
MRC 973
P.O. Box 37012
Washington, DC 20013-7012
(for FedEx, UPS, and other non– USPS delivery)
750 Ninth Street NW,
Suite 4100
Washington, DC 20001


Please apply using the Smithsonian online application system at: