National Postal Museum closes due to COVID-19
By Bill McAllister, Washington Correspondent
The National Postal Museum in Washington, D.C., has closed its doors due to staffing shortages caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
It is one of three Smithsonian Institution facilities in Washington that are closing “until further notice,” the Smithsonian announced on Jan. 14.
The closings were effective Tuesday, Jan. 18.
National Postal Museum spokesman Marshall Emery said, “We simply do not have enough trained people available to remain open to the public.”
“Based on a thorough assessment of our situation, the decision was made to close our museum until further notice,” he said.
Emery said the museum’s upcoming “Baseball: America’s Home Run” exhibition is still scheduled to open April 9. For more details about the exhibit, see the story in the Feb. 7 issue of Linn’s Stamp News.
Also closed are the popular National Air and Space Museum, which is undergoing an extensive renovation, and the Anacostia Community Museum.
Other Smithsonian museums are reducing their hours because of the staff shortages, the Smithsonian said.
Many will operate five days a week, closing on Monday and Tuesday and remaining open Wednesday through Sunday.
“This modified schedule allows the Smithsonian to continue to reposition key staff across its museums as needed while offering the public more opportunities to visit its museums,” the Smithsonian said in the Jan. 14 news release.
The Smithsonian also promised to “continue to assess the situation and staffing needs and adjust the schedule as needed.”
Alexandria Fairchild, a Smithsonian spokeswoman, said the three closed museums “all volunteered to temporarily close because their programming and exhibition schedule allowed them to.”
The National Postal Museum, located on Capitol Hill, closed in March 2020 along with other Smithsonian museums because of the COVID-19 pandemic. It reopened on Aug. 27, 2021.
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