Artifact Collection Highlights

The National Museum of Diplomacy’s artifact collection is unique to the nation. Nowhere else does a museum collection exist that is solely dedicated to our nation’s diplomatic history. Artifacts are powerful storytelling tools which will shed light on the work and history of our nation’s diplomats that may otherwise go unnoticed by the general public. At over 9,000 items, the collection reflects a wide range of people, places, and issues that make up our nation’s rich diplomatic history. Collecting efforts are ongoing as we build a world-class collection.

Sheikh Ali Jaber Al Sabah, Mayor of Jahra City and son of the Amir of Kuwait, lays flowers at the U.S. Emba
Preserving the Memories and Mementos of September 11, 2001
Preserving the Memories and Mementos of September 11, 2001 1024 683

Above: Sheikh Ali Jaber Al Sabah, Mayor of Jahra City and son of the Amir of Kuwait, lays flowers at the U.S. Embassy in Bayan, Kuwait. (AP Photo/Gustavo Ferrari) Originally published on DipNote On September 11, 2001, the world saw the horrifying terrorist attacks in New York and Washington, D.C.  Many people worldwide rushed to…

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Kellogg-Briand Pact Signing
The Kellogg-Briand Pact: The Aspiration for Global Peace and Security
The Kellogg-Briand Pact: The Aspiration for Global Peace and Security 1024 793

August 27, 2021 marks 93 years since the signing of the Kellogg-Briand Pact. The United States and France drafted the treaty, officially known as the General Treaty for Renunciation of War as an Instrument of National Policy, in the decade following the end of World War I.  This historic treaty pursued the lofty goal of…

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U.S. and Chinese exhibition teams pose for a photo at the exhibition. Photo courtesy of Connie Sweeris.
Ping Pong Diplomacy: Artifacts from the Historic 1971 U.S. Table Tennis Trip to China
Ping Pong Diplomacy: Artifacts from the Historic 1971 U.S. Table Tennis Trip to China 1024 527

In April 1971, nine players from the U.S. Table Tennis team took a historic trip to China, becoming the first delegation of Americans to visit the country in decades. Following the 1949 Chinese revolution, there had been no diplomatic ties, limited trade, and few contacts between the United States and the People’s Republic of China.…

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v1 small Damaged Great Seal
Artifact Highlight: Damaged Great Seals from U.S. Diplomatic Missions
Artifact Highlight: Damaged Great Seals from U.S. Diplomatic Missions 1024 576

These Great Seals were damaged during attacks on U.S. diplomatic missions. They are physical reminders of the dangers that Diplomatic Security Service special agents and personnel face in protecting our missions around the world. Whether it’s civil unrest, terrorist attacks, military conflicts, countering espionage, or any other threats, Diplomatic Security Service personnel lead the way…

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Joseph Nye Credentials
Credentials of the First Chief Special Agent of the State Department, Joseph M. Nye
Credentials of the First Chief Special Agent of the State Department, Joseph M. Nye 811 1024

Each month, the National Museum of American Diplomacy highlights special artifacts from the U.S. Department of State’s Diplomatic Security Service. This month, we are showcasing an old and special artifact in our collection: the credentials of the first-ever Chief Special Agent of the State Department, Joseph M. “Bill” Nye.

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1909 Consular Class Photo Artifact Highlight
Artifact Collection Highlights: Early 2021 Acquisitions
Artifact Collection Highlights: Early 2021 Acquisitions 1024 792

Our artifact donors’ generosity has resulted in an active start to our collecting in 2021. Highlights from these recent acquisitions include a photograph of new consular officers from 1909 (the oldest officer class photo the museum has), a unique collection of diplomatic security tokens, and a 19th-century passport. A 1909 Consular Officer Class Photo 1909…

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From Holocaust Survivor to Ambassador: The Story of Robert G. Neumann
From Holocaust Survivor to Ambassador: The Story of Robert G. Neumann 1024 768

January 27th is International Holocaust Remembrance Day, a day to honor the six million Jewish victims of the Holocaust and millions of other lives lost. Today we pause to honor Ambassador Robert G. Neumann, sharing his story from a personal object of his in our collection.

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Welcome Group with Yellow Ribbons
“Tie a Yellow Ribbon:” The Origin of the National Response to the Iran Hostage Crisis
“Tie a Yellow Ribbon:” The Origin of the National Response to the Iran Hostage Crisis 1024 827

In November 1979, 52 Americans in the U.S. Embassy in Tehran were taken hostage by Iranian students. Everyone, from the most junior staff members to the person in charge of the embassy, were taken and held in captivity for 444 days. Closely following the crisis for over a year, the public wanted to show their…

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2020 Artifact Highlights National Museum of American Diplomacy
Our Favorite Artifact Acquisitions of 2020
Our Favorite Artifact Acquisitions of 2020 1024 493

For the National Museum of American Diplomacy, building our artifact collection has always involved a focus on both the past and the present. Collecting has focused on not only documenting historical events and individuals, but also the work being done by diplomats today. For 2020, as historic events shook the world, “collecting the present” took…

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Diplomatic Courier Items
Artifact Collection Highlights: Ambassador Dudley’s Passport and Items From a Diplomatic Courier
Artifact Collection Highlights: Ambassador Dudley’s Passport and Items From a Diplomatic Courier 1024 768

The National Museum of American Diplomacy has collected some significant items in recent weeks. These include a diplomatic passport issued to Ambassador Edward R. Dudley, the first African American to hold the rank of ambassador. The passport joins a number of documents, letters, and photographs from Dudley’s trailblazing service collected in 2019. Also collected were…

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