The Staffordshire Hoard is proving a major hit in the United States after becoming the second most popular touring exhibition at the National Geographic Museum in Washington DC.
Only the famous Chinese Terracotta Army has received more paying visitors in its opening weekend two years ago.
The Anglo-Saxon treasure, found buried in a farmer’s field near Burntwood two years ago, has captured the imagination of US history buffs.
More than 1,000 paid eight dollars-a-head to view the rare items of gold and silver, on the opening weekend.
National Geographic Museum supervisor Chris Wallett said: “On the opening day we had more than 650 visitors. The reaction has been amazing, everyone is so excited about the Hoard being here.
“It was the biggest first day crowd since we had the Terracotta Warriors exhibition at the museum almost two years ago, which was eventually seen by 280,000 people over four and a half months.”
The treasure is jointly owned by the Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery and Potteries Museum and funds raised from the tour are being ploughed into the research and restoration of the treasure.
Coverage of the rare find is also being ramped on both sides of the Atlantic with a major feature in the National Geographic magazine and a documentary for its satellite television channel.
A new book ‘Lost Gold: War, Treasure, and the Mystery of the Saxons’ is also being released.
The Hoard exhibition lasts until March, and the Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery is currently considering requests from other international museums.
The Hoard features more than 3,300 mainly gold and silver artefacts from the seventh and eighth centuries and some are on permanent display in Birmingham.