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Smithsonian Insti”tut”ion (Alex)

by on July 21, 2014

Today, we went to the Bureau of Engraving and Printing, and the American and Natural History Museums. We started by going to the Bureau of Engraving and Printing. The BEP is where money is printed. I thought it was interesting how the sheets of paper are ordered from a company that makes birthday cards. We saw the printers and the lettering that does the Serial Number, signature, etc. I also thought it was interesting that bills that are imperfect will have another pre-created bill take its place, and the second bill will have the serial number of *_________________*. With the *s, I quite literally mean that stars will be put on the serial number. We also learned about how the government tries to prevent counterfeiting. After the Bureau of Engraving and Printing, we went to the American History museum. The first exhibit there, contained the real Star-Spangled Banner. The flag was in a very dark room, with about 12 LEDs on the floor lighting up the room (barely). After the Star-Spangled Banner, we saw the War section. These contained artifacts and movies about the Revolution, 1812, French And Indian War, Civil War, Vietnam War, Korean War, WWI, WWII, etc. This area was rather boring, as we have seen lots of war-related stuff on this trip. Later, we saw the President/First Lady area of the museum. They had movies and artifacts related to, THE PRESIDENT AND FIRST LADY (which we totally weren’t expecting (not). One of the areas that Mom and Anna liked was the area with the ball gowns. There also were Dorothy’s shoes from Wizard of Oz, and an Apple II and an original Google server rack. After the American History Museum, we went to the Natural History Museum. Before we tell you about this museum, they had diamonds (but the ones in the UK were better), and they had a space area (we preferred their sister museum, Chabot in Oakland). The diamond area had a very large diamond, and a diamond necklace (which I noticed was crowded by females), but I thought the most interesting parts were the interesting quartz formations, and the atomic formation of the different minerals. We also stopped by the space area, which had meteors and such, but nothing very interesting. This is what we did today.

I will admit that it is very hard to blog while having Secret Service Suburbans outside our house/apartment (as the Speaker of the House lives right next door to where we are. Speaking of which, he just got into the cars and drove away [but Daddy let his guard down for a moment and didn’t get the photo]



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One Comment
  1. Aunt Ginny permalink

    Very well written piece Alex. Love the secret service cars…I sent them to watch over you…it’s rough in Washington, D.C. Unfortunately war is a big part of our history. If it were not for Churches and war there would be a lot less to see on your historic trips.

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