Washington - National Postal Museum

2 Massachusetts Ave., N.E.

About Us:

The Museum supports a wide variety of interdisciplinary research projects which address topics of importance such as current and future postal operations, as well as philatelic and postal history. Our efforts are a resource and point of reference for research and wider investigation by historians throughout the United States and the world.

The National Postal Museum is divided into galleries that explore America's postal history from colonial times to the present. Visitors learn how mail has been transported and the wondrous diversity of postage stamps. 

The national collection illustrates and invites research into United States philately and postal operations. It contains prestigious postal issues and specialized collections, archival postal documents and three-dimensional objects that trace the evolution of the postal services.

Open every day (except December 25)

10:00 am to 5:30 pm

Admission is always free!


Emily Hendrickson

Wednesday, April 18, 2018
Fantastic museum! This is one of our family favourites in DC. It isn't as well known, and is kind of a hidden gem. My children thought it was fun sorting and scanning (play) packages. My teen even enjoyed the museum, and I did as well. It's great for all ages. The building is beautiful, and the museum isn't as busy as the more popular ones. It's also free admission, just as many museums are in DC.

Bruce Gamino

Thursday, March 29, 2018
My wife is a postal worker, so we may be a little biased but a very nice museum next to union station. Located in the old Washington main Post Office. It has basically three sections. If your into collecting stamps or just like stamps it has a great section covering US stamps from the beginning of the nation. The second sections is the history of the delivery and processing the mail, which the wife loved because its all the stuff she works on. Finally a section on how they protect the mail, with a nice section on the postal inspection service, mail fraud and case studies on mail crime. A neat museum to see if your in the union square area.

Ellie Hawkins

Thursday, Jan. 18, 2018
I've visited the postal museum a few times within a month. First off, it's a beautiful building! ..I'm a former postal stamp collector myself and so it brought back lots of good memories and made me miss my stamp collection. Overall the different exhibitions are interesting and informative. I especially enjoyed the movie about postal/mailing system in the bottom floor. Also, you or your child can start your own stamp collection with 6 free stamps here (ground floor). Neat!

DP Sen

Monday, Feb. 12, 2018
Way more interesting and interactive than you'd expect. There's a letter from the Titanic and the Hindenburg, and many more letters and more from various times and people in history. The Silk Road ... Oldest paper letter ... 1360AD!!! We've been to a lot of the National Museums and this one definitely had a lot of "touchables" for the kids. Interesting perspectives from the was with regard to women second overseas and all in all it is fascinating to see how our mail actually makes it's way to our postboxes and doorstep. Definitely a must see.

Robert Bess

Saturday, March 31, 2018
Philatelists will go nuts. This is one of the most outstanding free museums I've ever experienced with stunning displays (yes stunning POSTAL displays) and interactive stations that the kids will actually enjoy. I came across one group of young collectors sifting through thousands of free stamps. THAT'S how you guarantee the survival of a hobby. Could the US Mint afford to do something similar? I've never been to their museum.

Recent News

World's Rarest Stamp Now on Display at National Postal Museum

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Exhibition - Pacific Exchange China And Us Mail

Today, China and the United States are the world's two largest economies, major powers that often cooperate strategically. They also share a complicated history. The two have been World War II allies and Cold War enemies, partners and rivals. Using …

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Exhibition - Alphabetilately

Since 1993 the Smithsonian National Postal Museum has developed engaging exhibitions and entertaining public programs for families, students and serious collectors. To celebrate our 15th anniversary, the museum is showing an exhibition rich in phil…

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