The New American Liberty Coin Design & The 24 That Were Rejected

American Liberty Coin and The Rejected Designs

With more diverse coin designs to come the new 2017 American Liberty Gold Coin unveiled yesterday is the first to feature an African American Lady Liberty. It was designed to kick-off the Mint’s 225th Anniversary and was chosen from 25 final proposed designs of re-imagined versions of Lady Liberty. We’re going to show you the other 24 coin designs that were in the running as well.

New American Liberty Coin

The obverse side of the 2017 American Liberty Gold Coin
The reverse side of the 2017 American Liberty Gold Coin

The new coin (shown above and below) is the first in a series of 24-karat gold coins that will feature designs which depict an allegorical Liberty in a variety of contemporary forms-including designs representing Asian-Americans, Hispanic-Americans, and Indian-Americans among others-to reflect the cultural and ethnic diversity of the United States.

Justin Kunz, the artist behind several previous coins and medals for the US Mint, is the artist behind the new 225th Anniversary Gold Coin featuring a beautiful African American version of Lady Liberty rocking flat twists.

Justin Kuntz’ winning design for the 2017 American Liberty 225th Anniversary Gold Coin

Not his first re-imaging of the Lady, Justin also designed a more contemporary depiction of Lady Liberty for the 2015-2016 High Relief American Liberty Gold Coin and Silver Medal which were minted in a limited number for collectors, but never put into circulation.

above: The 2015-2016 American Liberty High Relief Gold Coin and Silver Medal by Justin Kunz featured a more contemporary version of Lady Liberty

Other Lady Liberty Coin Design Candidates

Here are the other 24 proposed designs made to the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee (CCAC) in March 2016 for the 2017 American Liberty High Relief gold coin (obverse side only):

(all drawings courtesy of Coin World  and Coin Week)

The official Press Release: Department of the Treasury Officials Join United States Mint for Unveiling of 2017 American Liberty 225th Anniversary Gold Coin

Unveiling ceremony kicks off year-long series of events celebrating Mint’s 225th Anniversary

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew, Deputy Treasury Secretary Sarah Bloom Raskin and United States Mint (Mint) Principal Deputy Director Rhett Jeppson today unveiled designs for the 2017 American Liberty 225th Anniversary Gold Coin in the historic Department of the Treasury’s Cash Room. The ceremony, led by Mint Chief of Staff Elisa Basnight, kicked off a year-long series of events in celebration of the Mint’s 225th anniversary in 2017 (#USMint225).

“We are very proud of the fact that the United States Mint is rooted in the Constitution,” said Principal Deputy Director Jeppson. “Our founding fathers realized the critical need for our fledgling nation to have a respected monetary system, and over the last 225 years, the Mint has never failed in its mission.”

The 2017 American Liberty 225th Anniversary Gold Coin design is unique in that it portrays Liberty as an African-American woman, a departure from previous classic designs. The obverse (heads) design depicts a profile of Liberty wearing a crown of stars, with the inscriptions “LIBERTY,” “1792,” “2017,” and “IN GOD WE TRUST.”

The reverse (tails) design depicts a bold and powerful eagle in flight, with eyes toward opportunity and a determination to attain it. Inscriptions include “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,” “E PLURIBUS UNUM,” “1OZ. .9999 FINE GOLD,” and “100 DOLLARS.”

The obverse was designed by Mint Artistic Infusion Program (AIP) Designer Justin Kunz and sculpted by Mint Sculptor-Engraver Phebe Hemphill, while the reverse was designed by AIP Designer Chris Costello and sculpted by Mint Sculptor-Engraver Michael Gaudioso.

The 2017 American Liberty 225th Anniversary Gold Coin will be struck in .9999 fine 24-karat gold at the West Point Mint in high relief, with a proof finish. The one-ounce coin will be encapsulated and placed in a custom designed, black wood presentation case. A 225th anniversary booklet with Certificate of Authenticity will accompany each coin.

These 24-karat gold coins will be issued biennially. A corresponding series of medals struck in .999 silver, with the same designs featured on the gold coins, will also be available.

Video of the 28 minute unveiling:

The Mint will announce additional information about the 2017 American Liberty 225th Anniversary Gold Coin prior to its release on April 6.

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