Rappers Ice-T and Russell Simmons are the first musicians to donate artifacts for a future hip-hop exhibit at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington DC.

The museum began gathering items for the collection yesterday (28FEB06), which surprised the rappers because hip-hop has only been around for the last thirty years.

Ice-T said, "It validates it (hip-hop). It's a good feeling."

The initial contributions to the museum's collection include a pair of turntables used by disc jockey Grandmaster Flash, known for the 1982 hit THE MESSAGE, and a boom box owned by FAB FIVE FREDDY, the original host of YO! MTV RAPS, as well as pictures, album cover artwork and recordings.

Officials from the Smithsonian's National Museum Of American History say it could be three to five years before the hip-hop exhibit is ready for exhibition.