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The Six Million Dollar King

President Abraham Lincoln’s Bible vs. a King Tutankhamun (“Tut”) Bust.

Two pieces of history — each carrying the weight of immense national pride for the individual subject — have interestingly, in recent days, moved in opposite directions for its next prized resting place. The Lincoln Bible has been donated by a private collector, legitimately passed down through generations, to the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum in Springfield, Illinois.

Conversely, a roughly 3,000-year-old bust of King Tut referred to as “the boy king,” is heading for Christie’s high-end auction block for sale by a private collector. However, the rub is that there is speculation in Egypt that the bust was stolen. Therefore, Christie’s has no right to sell what is viewed by some as a priceless work of art of one of Egypt’s most famous individuals.

Who is right? Christie’s or Cairo?

However you may feel upon reading the following, this actually seems like a question for fictional adventurer and professor of history Indiana Jones or author Dan Brown and his fictional (though based loosely on himself) Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon to resolve.

Or maybe the decision should be up to real art collector and King Tut impression extraordinaire Steve Martin?

Returning back to the real world, Egypt’s only claim appears to be limited to speculation of theft. Still, one has to have sympathy for antiquities professionals in Cairo, like former Egyptian antiquities minister Zahi Hawass, featured in the video above, because of the definitive ambiguity surrounding the sculpture’s origin story. It’s quite difficult to determine a clear right and wrong regarding the near-future ownership of King Tut’s sculpture.

Regardless, the auction took place yesterday at the famous Christie’s auction house, as reported by CBS News.

“A sculpture of King Tut’s head was sold at Christie’s for $6 million Thursday.” 

A prized American treasure of the past, Abraham Lincoln’s Bible is in a museum for all to see while a prized Egyptian treasure of the ancient past, a sculpture of King Tut, will be displayed by a private collector for a restricted audience to witness in awe. This is a fascinating debate on public ownership vs. private ownership and the ever-changing value of art inside the debate of perception vs. reality.

As the legal adage goes, “possession is nine-tenths of the law.”

Unlike King Tut, Cairo’s claim of one-tenth of the law won’t peacefully rest for eternity until the face of its country is returned.

And the rest of us are hoping to serendipitously score an invitation to an exclusive home art show that will display more than just macaroni art on the fridge.

Happy Presidents Day!

Why do we celebrate Presidents Day?

I’m so glad you asked.

Yesterday is history and tomorrow is (I won’t finish that). Anyways, we can never forget where we come from and how we got here. In the infinite age of information, it’s easy to ignore certain facts and realities. However, until we grasp the rich and consequential, yet still relatively youthful nature of the United States, our future as Americans will involve more mysteries and uncertainties than we may care to accept.

The presidency is a uniquely powerful, influential institution. Only 44 individuals have served in this position, which underscores the need for the best of us to lead this country.

If only George Washington or Abraham Lincoln could be on the ballot in 2016. The American people would happily take a Washington or Lincoln understudy.

Can Daniel Day-Lewis act like he was born in the USA?

I know, stupid question.

Of course he can!

Happy Monday!

Walking through the life and career of Abraham Lincoln at his presidential museum and home in Springfield, Illinois last Thursday was a thrill. Even with a solid understanding of his legacy, there was so much to learn and admire about this giant of American history. There was one exhibit set-up across the street that housed sets and costumes from Steven Spielberg’s 2012 movie Lincoln, starring Daniel Day-Lewis. The magic of film making combined with the defining power of President Lincoln created a great experience in addition to his impressive museum.

In the movie, there’s a particularly towering moment that captures Lincoln’s persuasive skill at getting tough things done, against all odds.

(Turn the volume up)

Achieve Something Great Now!

America’s Tip of the Hat to President Lincoln

From a cramped log cabin to the White House, Abraham Lincoln’s personal story in becoming the 16th president of the United States of America is remarkable. His perseverance combined with his vision and sense of humor in a stressful job resulted in a legacy that stands as tall as the man himself.

Exploring the Lincoln Museum in Springfield, Illinois today was insightful and impressive. Here are a few pictures that include said museum, as well as his preserved home nearby.

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President Lincoln’s presence was felt all day long, partly due to the historic items from his life and partly due to his selfless and consequential service for his country that provided optimistic light during some of this nation’s darkest years.

Mr. Lincoln was (and still is) an icon of strong American leadership.