The Jerome and Dorothy Lemelson Center was founded in 1995 at the National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution, through a generous gift from the Lemelson Foundation. The Center's mission is to document, interpret, and disseminate information about invention and innovation, to encourage inventive creativity in young people, and to foster an appreciation for the central role invention and innovation play in the history of the United States.
This site, developed by the Society for the History of Technology, teaches the history of the production and consumption of textiles. Three completed "modular units," Early Industrialization, True Colors, and Synthetic Fibers, link the history of textile technology to issues of race and gender in American history. Five more units will be available soon. Web teaching materials include teacher and student essays, lesson plans, slide shows, videos, and documents. Other collaborators on the project include the National Science Foundation; the Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation, National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution; and the Center for Children and Technology. The site is designed for middle and high school students and social studies teachers.