This article was originally printed in the latest issue of Numismatic News.
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A ceremonial coin pour of the new James Buchanan dollars on Aug. 19 helped usher in the next coin in the sequence of Presidential issues.
Rep. Joe Pitts joined historical re-enactor Don Walters as President Buchanan and U.S. Mint Deputy Director Andy Brunhart at Wheatland, the 15th President’s home in Lancaster, Pa.
“In a few short weeks, Americans will begin to see James Buchanan Presidential $1 coins and will be reminded of his place in history,” Brunhart said.
The golden colored coin is the third of four Presidential dollars that will be struck in 2010. The final issue of 2010 will be for Abraham Lincoln.
After the Aug. 19 ceremony, Walters, who is emeritus professor of educational administration at Temple University, joined Brunhart in giving children under 18 free coins.
Adults were able to exchange folding money for 25-coin rolls of the Buchanan dollars at the Metro Bank tent, which was set up to handle the transactions.
Walter also recalled the politically fraught environment of the Buchanan presidency as the nation’s division over slavery reached the crisis stage with the Supreme Court’s 1857 Dred Scott decision, requiring slaves who made it to free states to be returned to their masters. By the time Buchanan left office in 1861, the beginning of the Civil War was just weeks away.
Collectors can buy rolls of uncirculated dollar coins for $35.95 from the U.S. Mint. Rolls come from either the Denver or Philadelphia mints and contain 25 uncirculated coins. There is a postage and handling charge of $4.95 per order.
Visit the Mint’s website at www.usmint.gov to order, or telephone (800) USA-MINT.