I hadn't noticed the ad, which incorporated the Smithsonian Institution logo and states that "a portion of sales proceeds of this licensed product supports the chartered educational purposes of the National Numismatic Collection, located in the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History."
Has anyone seen these? I'm curious about their quality, who cut the dies, and where the pieces were made. I contacted Dick Doty at the Smithsonian and he confirmed that these are indeed marketed as part of a deal with the National Numismatic Collection. He also put me in touch with Karen Lee, who writes:
I work at the NNC with Dick and wanted to follow-up with you regarding the $100 Union souvenir. The Smithsonian does co-produce this item with the New York Mint. We worked closely with them to develop the product including packing, storyline and the quality of the item. The NNC receives a portion of the proceeds. As you know, all of the exhibitions, programs and websites we develop must be funded through private means. Revenue from the sale of this product means we have financial help to build a new exhibit --opening here at the American History Museum in Spring 2009.
Wayne Homren, Editor
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