The National Portrait Gallery and the Smithsonian American Art Museum will close to the public at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, January 18 for an Inaugural event. All afternoon tours and programs on that day are canceled.


Child working on an art project in the museum's Education Center


Teachers: If you are looking for a creative way to incorporate art and history into your curriculum, look no further! Students: Put a face on history! Use our collection to explore the lives of presidents, activists, renegades, artists, writers, inventors, and other Americans who have a place in our national story. We hope teachers and students will visit the Portrait Gallery; however, for those living far from Washington, DC, we offer our online collection, a useful and entertaining blog, and the opportunity to enroll in special teacher and teen programs.

We encourage teachers sign up for school programs and to search our collections for images that will enhance your lesson plans. Please contact us with your questions and feedback.  Our heritage is made up of fascinating men and women whose struggles remind us that history is an untidy and often hard-to-grasp discipline. We are here to make it more accessible, more relevant to those just beginning to forge their own paths in life, and inspiring.

Meet Americans. Discover Yourself.

For Teachers

Find lesson plans and learn about teacher workshops and school programs.

For Teens 

Explore engaging programs for teens.

For Families

What you need to know for your next family visit.


Dropping by during lunch or after work?  We have just the thing.

Painted portrait of W.E.B Du Bois
W.E.B. Du Bois by Winold Reiss, circa 1925
A teacher at the University of Pennsylvania before founding the NAACP