Saturday, March 03, 2007

"Gold" at the AMNH

I enjoyed visiting the exhibition on gold a few weeks ago at the American Museum of Natural History. Learned some interesting facts, e.g.: 60 tractor trailers would contain all the gold in the world extracted so far (152,000 metric tons); and the Aztec word for gold is teocuitlatl (lit. "excrement of the gods"). Also, "A one-foot square cube is about the size of one ton of pure gold." And "The Federal Reserve Bank of New York holds the world's largest accumulation of monetary gold. Only a small portion belongs to the U.S. government. The bank serves as guardian for it, as well as the gold monetary reserves of approximately 60 foreign governments, central banks and international organizations. The vault is 25 meters (80 feet) beneath the street and holds $147 billion worth of gold bullion. The bedrock of Manhattan was one of the few foundations strong enough to support the weight of the vault, its door and the gold inside."

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