Visiting the Collections

Research visits to the object collections are by appointment only. Appointments to research specific collections must be requested two months in advance. Please contact to arrange an appointment. The NMAI’s object collections are housed at the NMAI Cultural Resources Center, 4220 Silver Hill Road, Suitland, Maryland 20746. Research hours are Monday through Friday, 9:30 AM to 4:30 PM, excluding federal holidays. Researchers are assisted by Collections Management staff, not by NMAI curators, unless prior arrangements have been made with specific curators.

To access culturally sensitive collections, including sacred and ceremonial objects, objects of cultural patrimony (communally owned objects), funerary objects, and human remains, researchers must obtain the prior written approval of the appropriate culturally affiliated Native American group(s).

For appointments to access the NMAI’s object collections for purposes of repatriation consultation, please contact the NMAI’s Repatriation staff.

For appointments to access the NMAI’s Archives (paper, photo, and media) for research, please contact the NMAI’s Archive Center staff.

Staffing constraints prevent providing public collections tours at the Cultural Resources Center. General tours for special-interest groups, such as visiting museum professionals or Native groups, are limited to 20 adults over the age of 18 years, and must be scheduled well in advance by contacting School groups are encouraged to visit the NMAI’s public exhibition facilities in Washington, D.C., and New York City.