Dear Ms. Gibson:
In its public meeting of 16 June conducted by videoconference, the Commission of Fine Arts reviewed alternative reverse designs for two of the non-circulating one- dollar coins of the American Innovation series to be issued in 2024. The Commission was pleased to take into consideration the preferences of the governor’s office for each state and of the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee (CCAC), and provided the following comments and recommendations.
Illinois. Consistent with the preference of the CCAC, the Commission members recommended reverse #1, depicting a steel plow resting on prairie soil against a background of vegetation. They commented that the close-up view of the plow is beautiful and engaging, showing the elegant details of this invention, and the depiction of the plow within an agricultural context makes the design more compelling. They observed that the inscription “Illinois” would be difficult to read because of the unusual font and the background of foliage behind several
of the letters; they instead recommended using the more legible font that appears on alternative #6B for the state name. They agreed with the governor’s office in favoring the theme of the steel plow, commenting that the alternative theme of the Eder-Berry Biopsy Attachment is interesting but less suitable for depiction on coinage.
Alabama. The Commission members recommended reverse #10 that depicts the base of the Saturn V rocket, and they cited the strong composition that conveys a sense of the rocket engine’s tremendous power at liftoff. They suggested showing the engine smoke as billowing along the edge of the composition for greater visual effect, as seen in alternatives #1 and #6, with adjustment to the vertical inscription “United States of America” as needed.
As always, the staff is available to assist you with future submissions, including the two remaining American Innovation coins, for Maine and Missouri, scheduled for issue in 2024.
/s/Thomas E. Luebke, FAIA
Ventris C. Gibson, Director
United States Mint
801 9th Street, NW, 8th Floor
Washington, DC 20220