The exhibit is part of the museum’s National Numismatic Collection and includes some general information about Bitcoin alongside graphs showing its exchange rate with USD beginning in 2014, which was considered by many mainstream financial reporters to be the cryptocurrency’s weakest year. Other Bitcoin-related items include a physical copy of a 2014 Bitcoin Magazine; a card reader for the Square payment platform; and a smartphone capable of handling cryptocurrencies (also known as digital currencies).
Altogether, The Value of Money exhibit features 400 numismatic items, including a 1933 U.S. Double Eagle; a 1934 U.S. $100,000 banknote; and a personal cheque signed by U.S. President James Madison in 1813.
THE VALUE OF MONEY
Marking the entrance to the new Gallery of Numismatics and the inaugural exhibition, “The Value of Money,” is an imposing vault door. According to the Smithsonian’s website, the exhibit explores the origins of money; the political and cultural messages that money conveys; numismatic art and design; as well as the practice of collecting money.
Visitors will discover connections between U.S. history and “global histories of exchange, cultural interaction, political change, and innovation,” reads the website.