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The United States is a young nation compared to the civilizations of Europe, Asia, and Africa, which date back millennia. Despite its youth, or, perhaps, because of it, the country has changed the world more than any other country. Both native born Americans and immigrants have impacted daily life with such contributions as understanding and harnessing electricity, increasing the efficiency of agriculture, and making quick transportation and communication possible.
Now, the United States Mint’s American Innovation Dollars are honoring American innovators and inventions with a new series. The series is perfect for collectors who are interested in history, technology, and science, as well as patriotic Americans who take pride in the important contributions of Americans to the modern world.
The American Innovation Dollar Series began with a single introductory issue in 2018. The coin featured the Statue of Liberty on the obverse and a design celebrating the first ever US patent. President George Washington issued the patent to Samuel Hopkins for a process that produced potash, one of the ingredients in fertilizer. The first issue of 2019 was a reverse proof version of the introductory 2018 coin, bearing the 2018 date.
Later in 2019, the first regular issue coins in the series will feature innovators and innovations for Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Georgia. Four new coins will be issued every year through 2032, with the states going in the order in which they joined the union. They will be followed by issues for the District of Columbia and the five US territories.
All of the coins in this series, including the introductory coins, will share a common obverse. Designed by Justin Kunz and sculpted by Phebe Hemphill, it features a left-side profile of the Statue of Liberty. The figure is shown from the chest up and includes her torch, which rises to the top of this face. The national motto, “IN GOD WE TRUST,” and the coin’s face value, “$1,” are included to the left and right of the figure, respectively.
The reverse of the introductory coin reverse proof features gear wheels in the upper left. To the right is the inscription “AMERICAN INNOVATORS.” President George Washington’s signature is near the bottom along with the inscription “SIGNED FIRST PATENT.”
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