Eakins Painting Sells for $68 Million

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The National Gallery is buying one of the 19th century's best-known American paintings, ''The Gross Clinic'' by Thomas Eakins, for a record $68 million.

The sale price sets a record for a pre-World War II work of art created in the United States, The New York Times reported.

The Smithsonian's National Gallery of Art will share the work with Alice Walton, daughter of Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton, The Washington Post reported. Alice Walton founded the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, which is scheduled to open in 2009 in Bentonville, Ark.

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