Rep. John Larson has reintroduced legislation in H.R. 1195 calling for $5 gold and $1 silver coins to commemorate the life and legacy of Mark Twain.
Mark Twain was the pen name for Samuel Clemens, whose many works are still mostly in print after nearly a century past his death in 1910. Clemens is one of the best known Americans in the world with over 6,500 editions of his books translated into 75 languages.
2010 marks the 175th anniversary of Mark Twain’s birth and the 125th anniversary of the publication of Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. It is also the target year for the gold and silver coins to honor Twain.
H.R. 1195 would authorize coin surcharges for several historical sites, including the Mark Twain Boyhood Home and Museum in Hannibal, Missouri. Cosponsoring the bill are three representatives, one of whom is Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer from Missouri.
"Mark Twain and the city of Hannibal are integral parts of our Missouri heritage and the American experience, so these coins not only help us celebrate the great author’s contributions to our country, but also assist in preserving sites like his boyhood home in Hannibal, " said Luetkemeyer.
"I look forward to working with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle on this important legislation."
Government Printing Office (GPO) is yet to publish the text of H.R. 1195. However, it is likely a twin to the prior legislation, named the Mark Twain Commemorative Coin Act, H.R. 7152.
H.R. 7152, like many other coin bills from 2008, failed to advance in the 110th Congress. It included provisions for the United States Mint to issue 100,000 $5 gold coins and 500,000 $1 silver coins in 2010.
[Editor's update: The text of the legislation is now available at: H.R. 1195: Mark Twain Commemorative Coin Act]