Favorite Everhart medal and coin designs, part 5: The Dalai Lama medal and National Baseball Hall of Fame commemorative coins

(Wikipedia photo courtesy of the Dalai Lama)

Conclusion to a five-part series. Click here to read part 1, part 2, part 3, and part 4.

Updated 8/8/17 at noon to correct the statement that Don Everhart designed the obverse and reverse of the Dalai Lama Congressional Gold Medal. The designer and sculptor of the reverse was Joseph Menna.

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 and engravings.On Tuesday I showed the 2006 State quarter for Nevada; on Wednesday, the 2009 Women Airforce Service Pilots medal; on Thursday, the Statue of Liberty reverse of the Presidential dollar series; on Friday, two coins in the First Spouse gold program. Today: two more examples of Everhart’s art, a sampling of more than 100 coins and medals he worked on during his tenure at the Mint.

The 2006 Dalai Lama Congressional Gold Medal

In chapter 2 (“Behind the Scenes at the U.S. Mint”) of American Silver Eagles: A Guide to the U.S. Bullion Coin Program, retired U.S. Mint chief engraver John Mercanti describes a few examples of what he considers good coin and medal designs. One of the medals he showcases is the Congressional Gold Medal commemorating the Dalai Lama of Tibet. The obverse of the medal were designed by Everhart (the reverse was designed and sculpted by Joseph Menna). Mercanti writes:

The obverse is a beautiful portrait designed and rendered by Don Everhart. Don was my second in command and could model a portrait faster than anyone I ever knew. He is also one of the premier medallic artists in the industry. This is a wonderfully balanced piece. The simplicity of the reverse perfectly reflects the simple life of the Dalai Lama.

The 2006 Congressional Gold Medal for the Dalai Lama. (Hover to zoom.)

The 2014 National Baseball Hall of Fame Commemorative Coins

In my 2016 book American Gold and Silver, I described a unique group of three commemorative coins:

Although the United States has issued many gold commemorative coins from 1903 to date, including dozens in the modern era since 1984, the novelty of one in particular warrants its inclusion in this chapter. In 2014 the U.S. Mint released a suite of three commemorative coins—a half dollar, silver dollar, and $5 gold piece—celebrating the 75th anniversary of the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York. These coins are unique in that they were the first-ever curved coins produced by the Mint. Their obverses are concave, to recreate the cupped curvature of a baseball glove, and their reverses are convex, like the surface of a ball.

“These coins commemorate important aspects of American history and culture,” said U.S. Mint Deputy Director Richard A. Peterson. “This is a great way to connect with America’s pastime.” The nation agreed, with the coins making headlines from coast to coast and collectors buying more than 50,000 in total. In comparison, the Mint sold 25,000 of its 2011 U.S. Army commemorative $5 gold pieces.

On the opening day of sales, March 27, 2014, the Whitman Baltimore Coin & Collectibles Expo and the U.S. Mint Sales Center at Mint headquarters in Washington, DC, were the only two places where collectors could hand over payment and immediately receive the coins. Baseball Hall of Famer and legendary Baltimore Orioles defensive third-baseman Brooks Robinson was on hand at the Whitman Expo to celebrate the coins’ launch.

2014 National Baseball Hall of Fame commemorative gold $5 coin. (Hover to zoom.)

Other world mints had created curved coins before, but for the United States Mint these coins were an innovation. Don Everhart sculpted the concave baseball-glove side of the coins based on a design idea by Cassie McFarland. He designed and sculpted the convex baseball side. These coins captured the imagination of the American public and made national headlines in a way that few other modern coins have.

The coins and medals we’ve explored this week are just a sampling of Don Everhart’s work for the United States Mint. Over the course of almost 14 years he designed and/or engraved more than 100 works of art for the American people. Everyone at Whitman Publishing wishes Don a long and happy retirement—or semi-retirement, at least, as he continues sculpting and designing in the private sector while spending more free time with his family. And we extend our grateful thanks for a productive career that gave the United States many excellent coins and medals to collect and enjoy.

Facebook Twitter Email


  1. KEITHSTER says

    Picked up the last of my spouses today glad that’s over! Ok bring on the junk so as to bring on the crowing as if there ain’t enough!! Good Luck Ya’ll”>”<

  2. Erik H says

    Earthling, a few months ago one fast food place I visited had rolls of “P” cents. They let me buy a few rolls but they were all “tails/tails”. I ended up buying an airtite roll and cherry picked 50 good ones. Since then I haven’t received very many but I did get a nice looking Frederick Douglas quarter the other day.

    As much as I don’t like collecting clad coins, I really like the EU set. I think the mint should continue producing the set. The NA dollar looks great as always and the Ozark quarter is nice too.

  3. sharks2th says

    The Palladium bullion release has been confirmed by deputy director Motl for September by Numismatic News in their August 22 issue. It was in the express issue I received this morning. No info on a proof Palladium coin was in the article.

  4. Daveswfl says

    2017P pennies EVERYWHERE here in Ohio. I have so many from change that I am spending all except those which appear perfect – and there are many near perfect. The best come from change dispensers because they are not fingered by the clerks.
    Also snagged 2 rolls at a FL McDs from a cashier who was about to close and was willing to lighten her cash drawer! God Bless her 😘

  5. says

    2017P are easy to find in NY. I was at the teller’s window at my local CHASE bank. She had a counter rack filled with fresh mint rolls. I took 4…..lucked out with obverse and reverse on each roll!
    Away into storage they go. I guess the great-great grandkids will be glad 100 yeas from now!

  6. KEITHSTER says

    Heck the platinum proof may still be here by next year? Seems they found the rest of them or did they have that many at the show to pick from? Well you are in luck if you need one !! Good Luck To Us All:>:>:>:>:>:>:>:>:>:>:>

  7. Erik H says

    With palladium prices as high as they have been I’m glad there will not be a proof this year. Bullion palladium will be priced a lot closer to melt saving me money!

  8. KEITHSTER says

    Well that was fast there was over 100 APE’s an hour ago now they are gone! Gone for good or to be picked and put back? Somebody got lucky and has some bucks looks like I shot my own foot this time mikey? Good luck To Ya”>:’..\\>>>

  9. says

    At this stage of the Game I have faith in cans of food. The one drawback is portability. It’s harder to carry a case of Beans than a piece of Gold. On the other hand , you don’t get much out of eating Gold.

  10. earthling says

    “Coming soon to your community may be the first ever international Jewish currency, dreamed up by a Russian entrepreneur. 

    BitCoen, an electronic crytopcurrency based off of the idea of BitCoin, is set to launch in September. ”

    So when will we see crytocurrency especially for Numisfans? Anyone inclined to Cash in? Just think, you could soon reap enough profit to own every Coin that tickles your fancy. Your Collection could be much better than even the Pouge Collection.

  11. Tom P. - MA says

    Plenty of 2017 P’s in the Boston area. As is my habit for the past 40 years, I collect a few new ones and that’s it. Of course there is no harm in paying 50 cents for a roll of 2017 P’s. Anything above that east of the Mississippi is a waste of money. They’re going to make about 2 billion.

    2017 D’s on the other hand will take about 2 years to reach here in any quantity.

  12. Tom P. - MA says

    @earthling The prepper movement probably peaked 2012 with the NatGeo series. But as someone somewhere said, pay attention to what they do, not their belief system. They featured everyone from the clueless to the almost insane, but most shows had a bit of good info too. I loved the show with the Cali guy who carried Ike dollars because people “thought” they were worth something.

    The whole cryptocurrency thing is a Ponzi scheme by itself. Unless it’s accepted by the general public (bitcoin), it exists in a world of it’s own. Can anyone say Beanie Babies? Those were rare… and still are rare… but worthless.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *