Presidents and American Finance Exhibit to Open

On Tuesday, November 8, the Museum of American Finance will open “Checks & Balances: Presidents and American Finance,” an exhibit on the financial challenges faced by American Presidents both in the Oval Office and in their personal lives.

From its inception as an experiment in a new kind of democratic government, the US has faced a panoply of economic and financial challenges. More often than not, it was the President to whom the nation turned to tackle these problems.

Designed as an ongoing series of rotating exhibitions, the inaugural installment of “Checks & Balances” will focus on the national and personal fiscal policies of five of the most well-known Presidents: George Washington, Andrew Jackson, Abraham Lincoln, Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson. The exhibit will introduce important Treasury secretaries and track significant financial markers, such as GDP, presidential salary and the consumer price index. It will then delve into the personal finances of the Presidents, including their economic backgrounds and their own banking practices.

Financial historian Robert E. Wright, Nef Family Chair of Political Economy at Augustana College SD, guest curated the exhibit, which was developed and designed by Becky Laughner, Director of Exhibits and Archives, and Maura Ferguson, Director of Exhibits and Educational Programs.

“The exhibition will seek to create a dialogue between the nation’s financial past and the present, presenting the legacy and long-term impact of the Presidents’ financial policies on today,” said Wright.

Exhibit Opening Event: All are welcome to attend a reception to open “Checks & Balances” on Tuesday, November 8, from 5 – 7 pm. The event is open to the public- tickets cost $10 per person and are free for Museum members. For information and reservations, please contact Tempris Small at 212-908-4110 or tsmall@moaf.org. Working members of the press should contact Kristin Aguilera at 212-908-4695 or kaguilera@moaf.org for media access.

“Checks & Balances: Presidents and American Finance” is sponsored by Con Edison. It will be on display through November 2012.

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