While visiting the West Point Mint, I was able to get an early look at the design for the upcoming 2014 Proof Platinum Eagle.
The coin will represent the final release within the six issue design series highlighting the core concepts of American democracy as found in the Preamble to the Constitution. The previous releases of the series have featured the concepts To Form a More Perfect Union (2009), To Establish Justice (2010), To Insure Domestic Tranquility (2011), To Provide for the Common Defence (2012), and To Promote the General Welfare (2013).
The design for the final release will represent the concept To Secure the Blessings of Liberty to Ourselves and our Posterity. Although the coins are not yet in production, the West Point Mint had coin dies on hand which I was able to view. The Mint is still developing the final laser frosting which will be used in production.
The selected reverse design features a depiction of Young Liberty carrying the torch of freedom high. Her youth symbolizes the hope and promise of the new America. The gentle landscape symbolizes harmony, pleasure, and sociability, blessings that flow from a government the ensures that freedom passes from one generation to the next.
Like all previous issues of the series, the reverse design was inspired by a narrative prepared by the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court for the principle represented. For past releases, the narrative has been included on the display folder.
The reverse design incorporates a bald eagle privy mark from an original “coin punch” identified at the Philadelphia Mint. All American Platinum Eagle coins prior to the “Preamble” series had featured eagles. The use of the privy mark allows the exploration of new design concepts while preserving the brand identity of the American Eagle coins.
The design for the upcoming coin was selected from an initial field of twelve design candidates which were reviewed by the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee (CCAC) and Commission of Fine Arts (CFA) in late 2013. Coverage of their reviews can be found here and here.
The CCAC had recommended the selected design, which they had found to be well executed and emblematically suited to the theme of “Securing the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity.” Members felt that the design would also match well with the previous five issues of the design series.
The CFA had recommended an alternate design showing the hands of Liberty planting a sprouting acorn into fertile soil as a symbol of securing the blessings of Liberty. Members had found this to be the most concise and legible design, commenting favorably on the poetic symbolism of the sapling and the simple symmetrical clarity of the composition.
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