A coin dropped into a Salvation Army kettle last week in Naperville has made headlines
. It was a $400 gold coin wrapped in a $1 million bill (the $1 million bill was fake). This brings up the mystery of just who's behind this tradition of dropping gold coins into Salvation Army kettles. Apparently the tradition dates back to 1982, when a gold coin was dropped into a kettle in a Chicago suburb. Gold coins have shown up in kettles in many states ever since then. Some think the coins are donated by people who benefitted from the charity in the past. But others suspect
it may all be a publicity stunt engineered by the Salvation Army itself. After all, news reports about the gold coins always seem to encourage more donations. I suppose it's a hoax for a good cause, if it is a hoax.