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"Religion," mural in the North Corridor, Library of Congress Jefferson Building, by Charles Sprague Pearce, 1897.

Religion Collections in Libraries and Archives:
A Guide to Resources in Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia

Table of Contents - Preface/Acknowledgements - Abbreviations
Lists of Entries: District of Columbia - Maryland - Virginia

Smithsonian Institution:
National Anthropological Archives

Address: National Anthropological Archives
Smithsonian Institution
Museum Support Center
4210 Silver Hill Rd
Suitland, MD 20746
Telephone Number: (301) 238-1300
Fax Number: (301) 238-2883
Contact Persons: Robert Leopold, Director
Email: [email protected]
Internet Catalog Address:

Access Policies

Hours of Service:
Tuesday through Thursday 9:00 a.m.--4:30 p.m.
Open to the public: By appointment only; appointments can be made by submitting an appointment request form at
Photocopying:: Yes
Interlibrary loan: No
Reference Policy:
Telephone and mail reference questions are accepted although written requests are preferred. International calls cannot be returned.

Borrowing Privileges:
Not a lending institution.


Background Note:
The National Anthropological Archives, organized in 1968 in the Department of Anthropology of the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of Natural History, is the successor to the archives of the Bureau of American Ethnology (BAE) founded in 1879. Its purpose is to serve as the depository for the Department's records and to collect private papers and records of organizations relating to all cultures of the world and to the history of anthropology. Since the BAE was primarily interested in North American Indians, the NAA is an important source for the study of American Indians.
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Description of Collections

Archives, manuscripts, correspondence, and oral histories:
NAA is primarily a manuscript collection. The papers are arranged by office or person of origin not by subject. While there is information on world religions, it is not accessed by subject. Highlights include anthropology and world cultures which would include mythology, religion and folklore.

There are a variety of in-house finding aids to the manuscript collections as well as The Guide to the National Anthropological Archives by James Glenn.

Maps covering anthropology are available along with finding aids to assist in their use.

Subject Headings

Folklore; Mythology


Glenn. James R. Guide to the National Anthropological Archives. Washington, DC: National Anthropological Archives, 1996. Available HTTP. URL Accessed September 2000.

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  September 13, 2011
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