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The E-Sylum:  Volume 11, Number 13, March 30, 2008, Article 31

CHARLOTTE MINT MUSEUM ANNIVERSARY ARTICLE

[An E-Sylum reader forwarded this article from the Charlotte
Observer about the anniversary of the first coins struck at
the old U.S. Mint building in Charlotte, NC.  The Mint's
first gold coin was struck 170 years ago, on March 28, 1838.
-Editor]

It was a beautiful coin, with a profile of a crowned Lady
Liberty on its face surrounded by 13 stars, one each for
the original colonies.

And it shone brightly, made of pure gold, gold likely taken
from the ground under Charlotte.

On March 28, 1838, the first gold coin -- a $5 Half Eagle --
was struck at the U.S. Mint branch. It was on West Trade
Street where the federal building now stands. The old mint,
moved in the 1930s, now houses the Mint Museum on Randolph
Road.

"This was a small courthouse town around a trading crossroads,"
said Tom Hanchett, historian at the Levine Museum of the New
South. "Having the mint here drew people from literally around
the world."

The 1849 discovery of gold in California eclipsed Charlotte.
In 1861 the Confederacy took control of Charlotte's mint
branch and it ceased production.

One of four statues at the Square is a miner holding a pan
and spilling gold onto the head of a banker modeled on
former Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan.

Fated to be torn down, the U.S. Mint was salvaged by a
devoted group who scraped together $950 to buy the building.
Its stones were numbered so it could be reassembled, and
dumped on donated land near Briar Creek.

Through a federal program, the building was re-erected and
opened as the state's first art museum in 1936.

The Mint has an exhibit of gold coins made in Charlotte,
Half Eagles ($5), Quarter Eagles ($2.50) and One Dollar
($1) coins with the tiny "C" mint mark.

To read the complete article, see:
Full Story

For more information on the Mint Museum and exhibit, see:
Mint Museum

  Wayne Homren, Editor

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