Reverse designs for the 2019 and 2020 Native American dollars were among the submissions considered by the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee when it met June 21 at U.S. Mint headquarters in Washington, D.C.
The CCAC advises the Secretary of the Treasury on themes and designs pertaining to United States coinage.
The theme for the 2019 Native American dollar is “American Indians in the Space Program.”
The committee recommended Design 08, which features planets and three eagle feathers. The feathers represent three American Indian individuals who made major contributions to the space program: astronaut John Herrington of the Chickasaw Nation, engineer Mary Golda Ross of the Cherokee Nation and engineer Jerry Elliott of the Osage-Cherokee Nation.
The CCAC suggested that the legend “Charting a Path to Space” be replaced with something specific to Native Americans’ contributions to the space program, such as “American Indians in the Space Program.”
Members reviewed the Commission of Fine Art’s recommendation, Design 10. Many felt it was too busy for the small size of the dollar coin but remarked that it would be better suited for a medal.
The 2020 Native American dollar will honor “Elizabeth Peratrovich and Alaska’s Anti-Discrimination Law.” Peratrovich, a member of the Tlingit nation, was an activist who worked for equality for the Native people of Alaska. Her advocacy was instrumental in the passing the nation’s first anti-discrimination law in 1945.
The CCAC voted to recommend Design 09 for the reverse. It features a raven stylized in the Tlingit art tradition holding a key in its beak that is unlocking the door to equality. While some members noted that the raven design will need to be reviewed for artistic accuracy, others commended the overall design for blending Native American and traditional European elements.
The CFA recommended Design 06 featuring a portrait of Peratrovich and a traditionally stylized raven. Members noted that here too the raven will need to be reviewed for artistic integrity.
Next up for consideration was the Apollo 11 50th Anniversary commemorative program, whose 2019-dated coin reverses are to feature the iconic image of astronaut Neil Armstrong, the America flag and the lunar lander as reflected in fellow astronaut Buzz Aldrin’s visor.
The coins will be curved, similar to the National Baseball Hall of Fame commemorative coins. The reverse side will be convex, depicting the rounded shape of the astronaut’s visor.
The CCAC agreed with the CFA’s recommendation of Series 03 for the run of coins that consists of a clad half dollar, gold $5, silver $1 and 5-ounce silver proof $1.
The committee suggested that the denominations of all coins be spelled out, similar in style and placement to the half dollar design. The suggestion is contingent on “Ag .999 Fine 5 oz.” being placed on the proof coin’s edge, creating space for the denomination.
The Mint is holding an open competition for the obverse design. The winner will be announced in 2018.
The CCAC’s meeting was rounded out by considering designs for two Congressional Gold Medals: Filipino Veterans of World War II and Office of Strategic Services (OSS).
The first medal will honor Filipino soldiers who fought for the U.S. during WWII, soldiers who were promised military benefits that were later denied under the Rescission Act of 1946.
In recognition of the veterans’ commitment and sacrifice, veterans were awarded a monetary settlement in 2009 under the Obama administration.
Committee members relied heavily on the suggestions of the Filipino Veterans liaison, who recommended obverse Design 04. He commented that changes need to be made to the middle soldier’s hat, including its shape and the addition of straps. Additionally, the soldier’s uniform should not be buttoned up all the way. It was also suggested that he be depicted in three-quarters profile to match orientation of the other two soldiers in the design.
The recommended reverse is Design 01.
Because the OSS is a historically important organization, yet one that’s little-known to the general public due to its secret nature, the goal of the Congressional Medal is to both honor and inform.
The CCAC chose obverse Design 12 as its top pick.
Design 21 was CCAC’s pick for the medal’s reverse. It features a quote from Major General William Donovan, head of the OSS.
The committee suggested that the parachuter be replaced with a “frogman” diver to show the OSS’ diversity in action and to not duplicate the parachuter already depicted on the chosen obverse.
Members applauded the position of the quote text, the depiction of action, the inclusion of the OSS spearhead and the olive branches.
When considering the CFA’s choices for the OSS design, CCAC members commented that the obverse, Design 15, was too cluttered and appeared cartoon-like. A comment was made on CFA’s recommendation for the reverse, Design 19, that it does not stand out.
This article was originally printed in Numismatic News. >> Subscribe today.
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