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Presidents, Well Known or Not, Will Have Their Day on a Dollar
New York Times
Monday 20 November 2006, 11:53 am
Keywords: News Articles
By Matthew Healey; Published November 20, 2006
The United States Mint is unveiling four designs for one-dollar coins today, featuring likenesses of the first four presidents. They begin a series that is to last a decade and portray every deceased president.
The first coin, displaying George Washington on one side and the Statue of Liberty on the other, will go into circulation in mid-February, in time for Presidents' Day. After that, coins with John Adams, Thomas Jefferson and James Madison will be issued at three-month intervals.
Four more will appear, in order of each president's service, every year until 2016. Designs are based on presidential medals made previously by the Mint and on portraits in the National Portrait Gallery at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, where today's unveiling takes place.
The size, color and metal content of the $1 coins will be identical to those of the current Sacagawea dollars, but their luster should last longer because of a new anti-tarnishing compound that will be applied to blank coins between the time they are annealed, or softened by heating, and struck with the design.
The date and some inscriptions will be stamped into the edge, airing out the designs.
The director of the Mint, Edmund C. Moy, said the number of each presidential dollar coin issued would depend on circulation demands forecast by the Federal Reserve, regardless of how well known a president was. "This could be a renaissance for some of our lesser-known presidents," Mr. Moy said in an interview.
There will also be four new designs for the penny in 2009, to commemorate the bicentennial of Abraham Lincoln's birth.
Hopes are that the new dollars will be as popular as the state quarters, many of which have been taken out of circulation by collectors. The government has earned $4 billion to $5 billion on the state-quarter series since 1999.
See also the US Mint web site: