FUTURE OF U.S. COINAGE
Dick also pointed out an article from the September 10,
2002 issue of The New York Times. The article discusses
collector attitudes toward new coin designs. Dick writes:
"The thought that comes to me is: numismatics does not
speak with a unified voice. Ask a dozen numismatists and
you get a dozen different viewpoints. And I am not satisfied
with any statement the American Numismatic Association
states (which should be the voice for all of us in the field).
Should not a study be made of the future of coins and what
denominations are required before we start squabbling
about whose portrait should appear on them? Personally, I
see dropping both the cent and the nickel in a future economy.
But I believe coins should be struck in one, five, ten and
twenty dollar denominations with dime and half dollar fractional
denominations. I suggest coins be created in the same
denominations as paper money, and the portraits for these new
coins should be the same person (not necessarily the same
portrait -- it is a different kind of art -- that the notes bear!
Quarters? Souvenirs of the future!"
Here are a few excerpts from the article by Lynette
Clemetson, headlined "Penny in Their Thoughts: Two
Camps Debate New Look for Coins":
"Change is good. But changing change, as the United
States Mint is finding out, may prove to be tricky business.
The mint wants to make over America's pocket change,
replacing Thomas Jefferson's beloved Monticello from the
nickel with an image of Lewis and Clark's expedition, and
possibly retiring Abraham Lincoln from the penny and
Franklin D. Roosevelt from the dime.
Traditionalist's are reluctant. But coin collectors are cheering.
After all, they are the ones who got the debate rolling,
arguing that the United States' coins are boring."
"Some coin collectors have advocated redesigns that
eliminate presidents altogether, in favor of thematic
depictions of liberty and history.
"I'm not trying to put down dead dignitaries, but the public
wants to see something new to stimulate pride and interest,
not just in coins, but in history," said Fred Weinberg,
former president of the Professional Numismatists Guild,
which represents more than 300 coin dealers around the
world. "In the coin fraternity, this is hot news."
The idea has drawn a chilly response from presidential
supporters. The redesign report was originally released a
year ago, in August 2001, but became the focus of debate
this summer when officials at the Treasury Department put
forth preliminary plans for a new nickel that would replace
Monticello with a Lewis and Clark design.
The suggestion stirred the outrage of Virginians.
Representative Eric Cantor, Republican of Virginia, with
support of other Virginia lawmakers and Monticello
enthusiasts, introduced and pushed through legislation in
the House that would allow for a temporary three-year
commemorative redesign, provided that Monticello return
to the coin in 2006."
Wayne Homren, Editor
The Numismatic Bibliomania Society is a non-profit organization
promoting numismatic literature. See our web site at coinbooks.org.
To submit items for publication in The E-Sylum, write to the Editor
at this address: firstname.lastname@example.org
To subscribe go to: https://my.binhost.com/lists/listinfo/esylum
Copyright © 1998 - 2012 The Numismatic Bibliomania Society (NBS)
All Rights Reserved.
NBS Home Page
Contact the NBS webmaster