The National Numismatic Collection is dedicated to inspiring and educating a new generation of coin and currency enthusiasts.


Numismatic Discovery Cart

During your visit to the museum we hope you will enjoy the Numismatics Discovery Cart outside The Value of Money exhibition. Access to the cart is subject to docent availability.

Currency or Counterfeit?


This hands-on cart will encourage visitors to think like collectors and hone their observation skills as they use sight, smell, touch, and hearing to distinguish counterfeit coins and banknotes from genuine currency, and learn about the ways in which artisans, experts, and even criminals have innovated new ways to make and fake currency from colonial America to the present day. 

Visitors engaging with this cart will:

  • use their sense of sight, smell, touch, and hearing to observe coins and notes like numismatists, including getting hands-on experience with tools of the trade
  • identify different strategies to determine if notes and coins are counterfeit or genuine
  • learn numismatic terminology including obverse, reverse, edge, die, and strike

Related blog: Experience the hobby of kings with the National Numismatic Collection's new Discovery Cart


Learning Lab

Learning Lab enables you to search the Smithsonian collections, create and personalize your own collections, and share them as you wish. It is an excellent resource for teachers, students, and anyone with an interest in learning.

Groups created by NNC staff:




Object of the month


Brass weight in the shape of a man pointing a finger to his eye.

Akan Gold Weight

These brass weights were used by the Akan people of modern day Ghana and the Ivory Coast for measuring gold dust between the late thirteenth and early twentieth centuries. Click here to see the full record!


From the blog

You have what stored in the vault?! Five of the most unexpected things in the National Numismatic Collection

One coin, two coin, old coin, new coin: Searching for Dr. Seuss in the National Numismatic Collection


Links to other numismatic resources

United States Mint

o   Learn

o   For kids

Bureau of Engraving and Printing

o   The U.S. Currency Education Program

o  Money Adventure Mobil App

o   Meaningful Access Program

American Numismatic Association

o   Getting Started in Coin Collecting

o   Young Numismatists

American Numismatic Society

Society of Paper Money Collectors

Medal Collectors of America

The British Museum, Department of Coins and Medals

o   The Citi Money Gallery Education Programme


For teachers

Money Makers activity for grades K-4

Designing Money activity for grades K-4

Escape from Barter Islands activity for grades K-4