Meryl Streep brings big bucks and old jokes to National Women's History Museum fundraiser
Meryl Streep slipped into town Tuesday night to chide the government for being a little sexist -- then gave $1 million for a proposed National Women's History Museum.
"There's no women's history museum in Washington!" the star gasped in mock-astonishment to 350 guests at the Mandarin Oriental hotel. And yet, "there is a postal museum."
It's not the first time Streep, a longtime supporter of the effort, has told that joke. The Oscar winner also cracked wise about the National Postal Museum in a 2006 promotional video, prompting a very hurt letter to the editor of The Washington Post from the (female!) president of the American Philatelic Society. In fairness, Streep (in a Michael Jackson-esque military jacket) also joked about our city's textile, spy and wax museums. And clearly she feels strongly about it: Her gift, and $1 million Tuesday from pharmaceutical mogul Duane Burnham, brought the museum's starter fund to $8 million, reports our colleague Jacqueline Trescott.
Organizers want to build a permanent site near the Mall -- which would require congressional approval, plus $400 million in private funds. How did they enlist Streep? "I wrote her a letter," NWHM President Joan Wages told us Wednesday. "The truth is, it just struck a chord with her. She gets it at the center of her bones."
The Reliable Source
| September 23, 2010; 1:02 AM ET
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