The Royal Canadian Mint (RCM) and ModernCoinMart (MCM) have collaborated to present a stunning football commemorative! The first football-shaped coin in the world, this is an ideal choice for fans of the game. Find out more about this exciting Canadian release, and where you can purchase it!
In 2014, after seeing the success of a French astronomy coin issued by France’s Monnaie de Paris (Paris Mint), the U.S. Mint made their first attempt at a curved (or “domed”) coin with the release of a Baseball Hall of Fame commemorative. The popularity of these coins has inspired a number of other innovative sports-themed coins from other Mints. The appeal of these coins is dual – unusual, interesting shapes never seen before in numismatics and subjects that important to many sports fans.
In the U.S., there are pending bills in the House and Senate to issue commemorative coins for the Football Hall of Fame, which were originally going to be in the shape of a football, but the U.S. Mint said that would not be technically feasible. Those bills will likely die at the end of the 114th Congress in December. There are also bills that have gotten further in the legislative process to issue coins in 2019 for the Basketball Hall of Fame, which would be in the domed-shape to resemble a basketball.
The RCM made history last year with the release of their own first domed coin – the Library of Parliament commemorative that I spoke about in a previous article titled "Royal Canadian Mint's First Dome-Shaped Coin." Earlier this year, they continued the trend by striking their own basketball-shaped commemorative coin. This coin was struck curved and received fine, realistic colorization. I covered this coin in an in-depth article titled "Colorized Domed Basketball Coin from the Royal Canadian Mint."
Now, the Royal Canadian Mint (RCM) in collaboration with ModernCoinMart (MCM), has issued the first-ever football-shaped silver and gold coins! These were just released by the Mint and are already available from MCM graded by the Numismatic Guaranty Corporation (NGC) and in original Mint packaging. Like the baseball coins, they are concave on the obverse and convex on the reverse side, but they are elongated to an oval shape that resembles a football.
There are a lot of theories about how footballs used in North America came to be the unique shape they are today, but the key point is that it was not intentionally designed this way. According to one theory, this shape started 170 years ago they were made from a pig’s bladder, which is why today they are known as “pigskins.” Later, after footballs were made from cowhide and rubber, they were often difficult to inflate properly and ended up lopsided. That odd, warped-shape turned out to be a lot easier to throw for passes, so by the early 1900’s, footballs were designed into the elongated oval-shape we see today.
Here in America, football is typically seen as strictly played in the United States. This is not the case - American Rugby football began to be played in Canada in the 1860’s and eventually evolved into the game played today - Canadian football. The Canadian Football League and Football Canada, the sport’s governing body, trace their roots to the 1860’s. The CFL is the most popular and the only major professional football league in Canada. Its championship game is called the “Grey Cup.”
The 2016 RCM football coins include a $25 1 oz. silver coin with a low mintage of 8,500 and a $200 1 oz. gold coin with a tiny mintage of just 550 coins. The gold piece measures 44 x 26.4mm, while the silver piece extends to 48 x 30.33mm. Both are composed of .9999 pure metals – the standard RCM purity – and struck in a shining proof finish that really makes their detailed designs stand out.
The reverse designs show an inflated Canadian football with its night stripes, leather panels, and laces, which were originally part of the manufacturing process but are now used to make it easier to grip the ball. There are inscriptions for the denominations and “2017.”
The obverse has the Susana Blunt effigy of Queen Elizabeth II as well as inscriptions for “CANADA” and “ELIZABETH II D.G. REGINA.”
The exciting new football coins are another winning release from the innovative RCM partnered with MCM that brings football alive on North American coins. Once again, the RCM has produced an interesting new release with a very distinctive design and popular theme that will interest many people. The coins are expertly crafted by the Mint using its cutting-edge technologies.
They will appeal both to coin collectors who like unusual-shaped numismatic issues with low mintages, as well as to football fans who have the opportunity of acquiring an original piece of sports memorabilia. For these reasons, the coins should have good crossover appeal between numismatics and sports fans. Since both the U.S. and Canadian football league use essentially the same footballs, that means sports fans in both countries, among others who love football, will want to have the coins.
Purchase your Football-Shaped coins from ModernCoinMart, the company that made them happen, today!
Author Name: Louis Golino
Louis is an award-winning numismatic journalist and writer specializing on modern coins. He has been writing a weekly column for CoinWeek since May 2011 called “The Coin Analyst,” which focuses primarily on modern U.S. and world coins and developments at major world mints. In August 2015 he received the Numismatic Literary Guild’s award for Best Website Column for “The Coin Analyst,” and in August 2021 the column received the NLG award for best column on modern U.S. coins. He has also received other awards for his writing. He is also a contributor to several magazines, including Coin World, where he writes a bimonthly feature;The Numismatist, the American Numismatic Association’s monthly publication, where he writes a monthly column on modern world coins; and and other publications. He began writing about coins in 2009. He is a founding member of the Modern Coin Forum hosted by ModernCoinMart and has written articles for MCM since 2014. He has collected classic and modern U.S. and world coins since he was about 10 and first joined the ANA in the 1970’s. He has been writing professionally since the early 1980s.