New York gold exhibit moves to New Orleans on eve of conference there


10:19p ET Sunday, August 5, 2007

Dear Friend of GATA and Gold:

The spectacular exhibit on gold that has been on display for the last year at the American Museum of Natural History in New York will transfer to the Louisiana State Museum at the Old U.S. Mint in New Orleans and reopen there on Saturday, October 20 -- the day before the opening of the 2007 New Orleans Investment Conference, which runs from Sunday, October 21, through Thursday, October 25.

It's not as if you really needed another reason to attend the New Orleans conference, the biggest hard-assets financial conference in the world:

But now you have one, and the sooner you register for the conference, the more of a discount you'll get. And when you register -- either at the conference's Internet site or by telephone -- make sure to signify that you heard about the conference from GATA, since then we'll get a commission for helping to boost attendance.

Among the conference's speakers this year are GATA favorites Bob Bishop, Doug Casey, John Embry, Frank Holmes, Brien Lundin, and Frank Veneroso, as well as GATA Chairman Bill Murphy and your secretary-treasurer.

GATA will hold a reception during the conference, probably on the evening on Tuesday, October 23. More about that soon.

A New Orleans Times-Picayune story about the gold exhibit is below.

The gold exhibit continues in New York for another two weeks and you can learn about it here:

CHRIS POWELL, Secretary/Treasurer
Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee Inc.

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New Exhibit Will Give a Local Treasure,
the Old U.S. Mint, A Fitting Comeback

By Bruce Eggler
Times-Picayune, New Orleans
Sunday, July 22, 2007

New Orleans' Old U.S. Mint, closed since it was heavily damaged in Hurricane Katrina, is facing an unexpectedly golden future.

"Gold," an American Museum of Natural History exhibition featuring hundreds of gold nuggets, ingots, coins, pieces of jewelry, and other objects, will open this fall at the Esplanade Avenue building where more than 400 million gold and silver coins were minted between 1838 and 1909.

The Old Mint is part of the Louisiana State Museum, and museum Director David Kahn told the system's board of directors last week that the exhibit will be there from Oct. 20 to Jan. 2.

Hours and other details will be announced later.

"Gold" has been on view at the American Museum of Natural History in New York since November. It will close there Aug. 19, and New Orleans will be its next stop.

"The exhibition brings an international assortment of beautiful art and artifacts to New Orleans," said Lt. Gov. Mitch Landrieu, whose office oversees the state's Department of Culture, Recreation, and Tourism, which includes the State Museum.

The show features 100 natural specimens, 150 cultural objects, and 450 coins and gold bars.

"The monetary value of these works might be significant, but this exhibition -- in providing an extraordinary experience for locals and tourists alike, and in reinforcing the perception of New Orleans as a thriving and resilient international cultural center -- is worth more than its weight in gold," Landrieu said.

Kahn called the exhibit "a wonderful opportunity to reintroduce the public to the assets of the Louisiana State Museum system. This spectacular, entertaining, and educational exhibition about gold is perfect for the reopening of the Old Mint."

The Mint, which was built in 1835, lost about 60 percent of its roof during Katrina, although the artifacts in the building were saved and moved to temporary storage. The building was home to the museum's jazz collection and other exhibits before the storm.

Kahn said extra security will be in place at the building during the show.

"Gold" was organized by the American Museum of Natural History in cooperation with the Houston Museum of Natural Science. It is one of a series of shows the New York museum has done on precious and semiprecious materials, such as amber, diamonds, and pearls.

The exhibition follows the path of gold from the earth's depths to glittering pieces of jewelry, with time out to recall the periodic gold rushes, such as the California gold rush of 1848, that have followed its discovery in various places. Visitors learn how gold is located, mined, processed and turned into objects both beautiful and useful.

Exhibition highlights include enormous nuggets of gold such as the "Boot of Cortez," at more than 26 pounds the largest nugget ever found in the Western Hemisphere, and the 108-pound Summitville boulder, a piece of volcanic rock flecked and veined with more than 22 pounds of crystalline gold.

The treasures on display include examples of the first gold coins minted in ancient Lydia and Ionia, in what is now Turkey; gleaming pre-Columbian jewelry and other objects from the Americas; and doubloons retrieved from sunken Spanish galleons.

Modern objects include an Oscar statuette, two Emmys, and a Grammy, illustrating that for many, gold remains the ultimate reward. Also on view: a Faberge egg with gold scrollwork, a vanity box made by Cartier for actress Mary Pickford, a necklace made of gold coins from the jeweler Bulgari, and a brooch designed by Paloma Picasso for Tiffany & Co.

Another section of the show examines how countries have based their economies on gold. Ancient coins from China, Greece, and Rome, as well as a 1907 U.S. $20 gold coin, are on display, along with gold bars.

Throughout the exhibition, visitors also discover that gold has physical properties -- such as malleability, reflectivity, and conductivity -- that make it invaluable for technological uses from telephones and televisions to satellite circuitry and astronauts' visors.

At the end of the show, visitors can determine the value of their own weight in gold.

The State Museum will sponsor a series of public programs, lectures, and other educational opportunities during the exhibition, which will feature a special Web site and a gift shop at the Old Mint.

Kahn declined to predict how many visitors the exhibition will draw, but Angele Davis, secretary of the Department of Culture, Recreation, and Tourism, said she expects it will "have a significant economic impact on New Orleans and Louisiana."

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Join GATA at these conferences:

The Silver Summit
Thursday-Friday, September 20-21, 2007
Coeur d'Alene, Idaho

New Orleans Investment Conference
Sunday-Thursday, October 21-25, 2007
New Orleans, Louisiana

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