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Benito Mussolini
Tom Roberts, violin collector and anonymous Smithsonian donor

TOM ROBERTS, 75, Smithsonian's 'Mr. Anonymous' The name "Tom Roberts" appears on no plaque in the Smithsonian Institution's musical instruments collection. At no concert, even when Mr. Roberts was in attendance, did Smithsonian chamber musicians reveal that he was one of their greatest benefactors. Among museum curators, he was known as "Mr. Anonymous." Only a few of his closest acquaintances knew that for nearly two decades, Mr. Roberts owned one of the most prized instruments in the world — the "Hellier" violin crafted by Antonio Stradivari at the end of the 17th century. And even fewer people knew that in 1979, Mr. Roberts lent...