• Smithsonian Channel
    Stories from the Vaults

    S1 E1 Famous Donors

    Tom takes us back to the origins of the Smithsonian's collections. He explores Teddy Roosevelt's hunting trophies, John Steinbeck's sea urchins, and Phyllis Diller's joke file. Add these to the roughly fifty thousand items donated annually, and you get a sense of the immense number of artifacts the Smithsonian holds in its museums.

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Ever wonder what's hiding behind the scenes of America's most renowned museum complex? Find out as host Tom Cavanagh ("Ed") takes you on an entertaining insider's tour of the private rooms, high-tech vaults, and cutting edge labs of the Smithsonian Institution, revealing some of the amazing artifacts and rarely seen treasures that visitors can't see. Follow along as Tom uncovers the history of each object-its origins, how it's being preserved and studied, and what it might tell us.
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Stories from the Vaults