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Viewpoint: Commemorative possibilities endless

By: Bob Olekson

For all practical purposes, the half dollar is gone from circulation and hopefully the cent will soon be too. Why not still include them in mint and proof sets, but in commemorative forms like Canada does with its silver dollar every year?

For a start, the half dollar could feature famous authors such as Mark Twain, L. Frank Baum of Wizard of Oz and so forth; then famous statesmen like Martin Luther King Jr.; popular actors like Marilyn Monroe, Elvis Presley and Shirley Temple; or a wildlife series of turkey, pheasant, deer and buffalo.

It’s amazing the possibilities there are for the defunct half dollar and cent that could be used.

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Let’s all write our congressional representatives to advocate commemorative paper money. The themes could be the “Star-Spangled Banner” from the War of 1812. How about an Abraham Lincoln $5 bill with Lincoln at Gettysburg? There could be a $50 bill of Gen. Ulysses S. Grant with a Vicksburg reverse. The possibilities are endless here too.

Let’s put our thinking caps on and go to town with ideas and get our hands ready to write letters or email all our lawmakers and the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee, or whatever the body is called that recommends new coin designs.

I don’t know why they chose gold coins to feature the First Ladies. They should have been on silver American Eagles. Had they done so, the series would have been more affordable and available to average collectors.

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Why does the silver American Eagle have to have the same boring reverse every year whereas the platinum American Eagle gets a new, beautiful and exciting new design every year?


This Viewpoint was written by a Bob Olekson, a collector from Parma, Ohio. Viewpoint is a forum for the expression of opinion on a variety of numismatic subjects. The opinions expressed here are not necessarily those of Numismatic News.
To have your opinion considered for Viewpoint, write to David C. Harper, Editor, Numismatic News, 700 E. State St., Iola, WI 54990. Send email to david.harper@fwmedia.com.


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