Article 5 of 7 Previous: Salt River Bay National Historical Park. Next: Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve. The CCAC met by telephone in October 2017 to talk about themes and focuses for the 2020 and 2021 America the Beautiful coins. For the ...

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The CCAC and the 2020 and 2021 America the Beautiful quarters: Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park and more...

The CCAC and the 2020 and 2021 America the Beautiful quarters: Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park

Article 5 of 7

Previous: Salt River Bay National Historical Park. Next: Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve.

The CCAC met by telephone in October 2017 to talk about themes and focuses for the 2020 and 2021 America the Beautiful coins. For the Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller quarter, land stewardship was the prevailing concept. The important focus for this park is mankind’s management of nature. This is not a protected wilderness or a forest preserve. It’s a site devoted to deliberately and carefully planned human control of natural resources.

Eight months after that phone conference, in June 2018, we met to review the designs the Mint’s artists developed out of our conversation and from the Mint program directors’ guidance.

Because of the crucial aspect of human management of the land, in my opinion, the following designs are out simply because they lack a human element: VT-02, 04, 06, 07, 09, and, to a lesser degree (because it does show cut logs), 05.

Some of these sketches were...

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South Africa: First-ever commemorative banknotes celebrate birth centenary of Nelson Mandela

The South African Reserve Bank (SARB) announced (14th June) they will be launching their first commemorative banknote series, in celebration of the birth centenary of the country’s first post-apartheid president, Nelson Mandela. These notes will include all currently circulating denominations R10, R20, R50, R100, and R200. As part of the celebrations, the South African Mint, a subsidiary of the SARB, will also be issuing a new commemorative circulation R5 coin. The commemorative banknotes and coins, including collector gold, silver, and bronze pieces are part of the nationwide year-long celebration and observance of Mandela, regarded by many as the father of the nation.

The South African Reserve Bank is planning for these commemorative notes to be issued into circulation by the 18th July 2018, the actual anniversary day of Mandela’s birth centenary. It is expected that these commemorative banknotes and R5 coins will co-circulate for a limited time, together with the current...

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United States Mint launches America the Beautiful Quarters Program coin honoring Voyageurs National Park quarter

International Falls, MN — The United States Mint joined the National Park Service today to launch the America the Beautiful Quarters Program coin honoring Voyageurs National Park in Minnesota. It is the third America the Beautiful Quarters coin issued in 2018 and the 43rd release in the series.

This latest quarter’s reverse (tails) design depicts a common loon with a rock cliff in the background. Inscriptions are VOYAGEURSMINNESOTA, the year 2018, and E PLURIBUS UNUM.

The obverse (heads) design depicts the 1932 restored portrait of George Washington by John Flanagan. Inscriptions are UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, LIBERTY, IN GOD WE TRUST, and the denomination is QUARTER DOLLAR. A digital image of the quarter is available here.

In his remarks during the launch, Mint Director David J. Ryder said, “Just as the loon’s yodels and wails are a distinctive and timeless sound of Northern Minnesota’s wilderness and waterways, the Voyageurs quarter will echo the histories...

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The CCAC and the 2020 and 2021 America the Beautiful quarters: Salt River Bay National Historical Park

Article 4 of 7

Previous: Weir Farm National Historic Site. Next: Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park.

The outstanding Salt River Bay portfolio benefited from designs with bold, singular, primary devices that immediately draw the eye—a conch shell, a turtle, a mangrove tree. I like that approach because it helps to make a coin memorable. Thinking back to the Frank Church River of No Return wilderness coin (which will be minted in 2019): I supported the design that had a big, bold, front-facing portrait of a wolf. Kids would see that and they would all start checking their piggy banks and pocket change to find “the wolf quarter.” There would be no risk of it being just one more coin that you could describe as “the one with the mountains.” All of the Salt River Bay designs have that same type of boldness.

As an interesting sidebar: none of the designs directly illustrate the historical aspect of this historical park. But with so many excellent designs based on...

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The CCAC and the 2020 and 2021 America the Beautiful quarters: Weir Farm

Article 3 of 7

Previous: National Park of American Samoa. Next: Salt River Bay National Historical Park.

Weir Farm inspired another portfolio with many beautiful works of draftsmanship. The Mint’s artists captured the themes the CCAC and Weir Farm’s liaisons discussed in a telephone meeting in October 2017, regarding the site’s connection of art with the natural landscape. As the historic site’s officers told us, they’re faced with a challenge when people first hear the name “Weir Farm”—this is not an agricultural farm but a “National Park for the Arts,” with historic studios and cultivated landscapes where artists today can paint in the open air.

One concern I had, as I looked at these remarkable sketches for the Weir Farm coin, is that they might not translate well to the one-inch “canvas” of a quarter dollar. They would make wonderful large-diameter medals and would be well served by the three-inch silver planchet (every America the Beautiful design is...

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