Last week, CBS News interviewed U.S. Mint sculptor-engraver Don Everhart. Here's an excerpt. Be sure to follow the link and watch the
video (on the second page). -Editor
The U.S. Mint has been honoring our nation's first spouses -- the latest to get a commemorative gold coin is Mamie Eisenhower.
From stamping medals to making money, Mint designers are hard at work thinking small, as Anna Werner now shows us.
Donald Everhart, lead sculptor for the U.S. Mint in Philadelphia, says people are fascinated by how money is made. "Once they
realize that it's not just, you know, press some buttons on a computer and out pops a coin -- there's a whole process to
"There's art in money,' said Werner. "There's not, maybe, money in art, but there's art in money."
"That's a good comment, I like that!" Everhart laughed.
Everhart's designs range from the state quarters we use every day, to medals presented to world leaders.
It's a unique job -- there are only seven sculptor-engravers in the country, and they all work out of the same Philadelphia
"How many designs do you think you've come up with?" asked Werner.
"It's gotta be in the thousands, literally," he replied.
Most coin designers use computers, but not Everhart. For him, each design starts with a lump of clay.
And you can't argue with his results, creating images with depths of as little as 70 or 80 thousandths of an inch.
"How much artistic freedom do you have in terms of designing the coins?" asked Werner.
"Surprisingly, a lot. Because the committees like to see new refreshing angles. We've done so many different things on coins
that they want to see something that's indicative of the time we live."
Werner asked, "How do you wrap your head around the fact that millions of people have seen your work?"
"Well, millions of people have seen it, but I don't think they know who Don Everhart is. Even if they look at the little tiny
initials on it. On every coin or medal that I've done since I've been here, I put initials on. Look for a little DE, usually in the
lower right-hand corner."
And then we'll know, "Hey, Don did that coin."
To read the complete article, see:
Moneymakers: Artists at the U.S. Mint
Wayne Homren, Editor
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