Thursday, February 17, 2011

Liberty Coins vs. Man Coins

In 1909, there was a change to our coinage that spread further in the 1930s and the 1940s, and we have never looked back.  I am of course talking about the introduction of busts of real people on the faces of our most metallic of currency.  In 1909, Lincoln was imprinted on our pennies.  In 1932, Washington was placed on our quarters. In 1938, Jefferson nickels were introduced.  Eight years later, the Roosevelt dimes were rolled (no pun intended) out, and lastly, in 1948, Ben Franklin first graced the half dollar.  Before these changes were made, our coins fell into one of two categories: 1. They had a nameless native American on the obverse, and 2. They had a generic "Lady Liberty" gracing the front of the coin.

While I like that we pay homage to our most influential leaders (although there is one on that list above that I'm not terribly fond of...I'll leave it to the reader to determine), I would prefer if we printed "Lady Liberty" on our coins again.  Printing busts of great men (and women...I'm talking to you, Sue B. and Sacagawea) seems to elevate them above the principle of liberty.  Liberty to me is a concept that is above any man who has ever lived, no matter how great his courage in defense of freedom, and I think that is something we should go back to elevating on our coins.  Before you say anything, yes, I know that the word "Liberty" appears on each coin.

Below are some pictures of coins with "Lady Liberty:"
1916-1945 Mercury Silver Dime Melt Value  1916-1930 Standing Liberty Silver Quarter Melt Value  1916-1947 Walking Liberty Silver Half Dollar Melt Value  1878-1921 Silver Morgan Dollar Melt Value  1921-1935 Silver Peace Dollar Melt Value

Now are some pictures of "Man Heads:"

I would put more pictures up, but the text box is being wonky as hell, and I think you get the general idea.  

Which do you prefer?
Lady Liberty
Man Head free polls


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