|A bequest from James Smithson, an important British chemist and mineralogist, made this museum possible. This building, the first of the Smithsonian's many buildings, is in the Gothic Revival style. The plan is asymmetrical, with towers of various heights, generally indicating points of entry. The building is constructed of red Seneca sandstone.|
Looking west from the Mall
Left: the east side; center and right: the north side
The north facadeTwo asymmetric towers on the Mall (north) side flank the entrance, which is also signaled by the porte-cochère. Wings extend from this central building.