Don Everhart, the United States Mint’s senior sculptor-engraver, retired from his position in Philadelphia last week. This week I’m exploring some of my favorite Everhart medal and coin designs. On Tuesday I showed the 2006 State quarter for Nevada, and yesterday the 2009 Women Airforce Service Pilots medal. Today: a coin design featuring another famous American woman—Miss Liberty.
The Presidential Dollar’s Statue of Liberty, 2007–2016
The Guide Book of United States Coins describes the Presidential dollar series: “Former presidents of the United States are honored on this series of one-dollar coins issued for circulation during the period from 2007 through 2011, and only for numismatic sales thereafter. Four different coins were issued each year, in the order that the presidents served.”
United States Mint Director Ed Moy said, “These dramatic new Presidential dollar coins provide a perfect opportunity for Americans to learn more about our presidents and the critical roles they played in some of our nation’s historic milestones.” Public interest in the coins was high at the start of the program, with the Federal Reserve ordering more than a half billion of the dollars in 2007. The Mint launched a public-relations campaign to educate Americans and encourage people to use the coins in day-to-day business and to collect their numismatic versions.
The obverse portraits changed with each president, but the reverse of the coinage series was used on every Presidential dollar minted from 2007 to 2016. Don Everhart created a bold view of the Statue of Liberty, described by the Mint as “a magnificent image.” The statue, Liberty Enlightening the World, is depicted from the perspective of a viewer below, looking up to Miss Liberty holding aloft the torch that represents enlightenment on the way to freedom. The motif is finely detailed and the entire composition, including the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA and the denomination shown as $1, is well balanced.
For its artistry and for its significant place in American numismatics—as the reverse featured on every coin in the Presidential dollar series, a 10-year program of the nation’s largest-denomination circulating coin—this ranks as one of Don Everhart’s greatest designs.
Click here to read part 4, “The Dolley Madison First Spouse gold coin.”