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Remembering Aretha Franklin

August 2018

Aretha Franklin passed away this morning at her home in Detroit. Her musical talents and joyful light will be sorely missed.

Johnna Miller at the National Museum of Natural History shows Aretha Franklin the Hope Diamond during Franklin’s visit for the Smithsonian Institution’s 150th anniversary celebration in August 1996.
Johnna Miller at the National Museum of Natural History shows Aretha Franklin a replica of the Hope Diamond during Franklin’s visit for the Smithsonian Institution’s 150th anniversary celebration in August 1996.

Here at the Smithsonian, preserving the legacy of people like Franklin is part of our mission, through the collection and preservation of objects, photographs, and audio recordings, as well as through expert knowledge. Here’s a peek at how we will remember Aretha Franklin.