HANNIBAL, Missouri (AP) -- Mark Twain once quipped, "The lack of money is the root of all evil."
But up to 100,000 gold coins and 350,000 silver coins honoring the author and humorist will be available throughout 2016 or until they are sold out, U.S. Mint spokesman Mike White said.
Each year, the mint strikes two commemorative coins to benefit nonprofit organizations. As collectables, the coins are worth far more than their $1 face value for silver and $5 for gold. For example, 2015 commemorative silver coins recently were priced at about $52, gold for about $360.
Each carries a surcharge -- $35 for gold, $10 for silver -- to be divided evenly among the Mark Twain House & Museum in Connecticut; University of California, Berkeley, for a program to study and promote the legacy of Twain; Elmira College in New York; and the Mark Twain Boyhood Home & Museum in Missouri.
"If the entire issue is sold, it could be well in excess of $1 million for each of the sites," said Henry Sweets, executive director of the Hannibal museum.