Painting of 19th-century family overlooking river with White House in the distance


Treasures from the Albert H. Small Collection




Visit the Albert H. Small Gallery to explore the history of Washington, D.C., through this selection of maps, letters, prints and artifacts from the museum’s Albert H. Small Washingtoniana Collection.



About the Display

Highlights of the current display include two panoramic bird's-eye view paintings of historical Washington, D.C., created by Peter Waddell in 2018, and a selection of 19th-century stereographs of the city. Popular with tourists and sightseers, stereographs were the first photographs to be mass produced and offered a unique viewing experience. They were mounted in pairs and viewed with a set of lenses (a stereoscope) for a three-dimensional effect. A stereoscope is available for visitors to use in the gallery.

The Albert H. Small Washingtoniana Collection documents the formation, development and history of Washington, D.C., and the surrounding region from the 17th to the mid-20th century. It includes nearly 2,000 maps, prints, rare letters, newspapers, photographs and drawings, as well as an extensive reference library.

Organized by the Albert H. Small Center for National Capital Area Studies with support from the Albert and Shirley Small Family Foundation.