First Ladies' Gowns Return to Smithsonian Exhibit
December 19, 2008 - 4:38 PMGowns worn by first ladies during the past 100 years are returning to public view in a revamped gallery at the National Museum of American History in Washington, D.C.
The exhibit, "First Ladies at the Smithsonian," opens Friday. The dresses include Grace Coolidge's flapper-style evening dress and Eleanor Roosevelt's pink gown from the 1945 inauguration reception.
One of the oldest gowns in the collection, Helen Taft's 1909 white-silk chiffon inaugural gown, will also be displayed.
The gowns had been on display before the museum underwent an $85 million facelift. The museum reopened a month ago.
Museum director Brent Glass says the first ladies exhibit dates back to 1914. It was the first Smithsonian exhibit to prominently feature women.
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