Revolutionary War and War of 1812 Battlefields Commemorative Coins Proposed Again

by Mike Unser on January 27, 2012 · 5 comments

LegislationNewly re-introduced legislation in the House of Representatives would commemorate the battlefields of the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812 with up to 300,000 $5 gold coins, 1 million silver dollars and 2 million half dollars.

Proposed in one form or another in successive sessions of Congress since 2004, Rep. Rush Holt [D-NJ12] intends to give another shot at passage with a fifth version of the Revolutionary War and War of 1812 Battlefields Commemorative Coin Act. The Act, numbered H.R. 3818, was repackaged by adding the year 2012 and presented to the House for consideration on January 24, 2012.

Commemorative Coin Designs

As is often the case, coin designs are left broadly open to U.S. Mint artists. The bill’s language simply states they must be emblematic of the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812. Multiple coin designs would be created, reviewed by the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee (CCAC) and then selected by the Treasury Secretary after consulting with the Commission of Fine Arts (CFA) and the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812 Battlefields Foundation.

Surcharges

The foundation would be the recipient of commemorative coin surcharges in the amount of $35 for each $5 gold coin, $10 per silver dollar and $3 for each half dollar. H.R. 3818 indicates those surcharges must be used to preserve "historically significant battlefields" and sites related to the wars.

Commemorative Coin Specifications

Coin specifications outlined in the legislation are typical for commemoratives. The bill moved up the coins’ date and issuance to calendar year 2013, which will be at least one obstacle unless changed. Congress is limited to two commemorative coins for any year, and two have already been authorized for 2013 through the Girl Scouts USA Centennial Commemorative Coin Act and the Five Star Generals Commemorative Coin Act.

Other specifications require that:

  • The gold pieces would weigh 8.359 grams, have a diameter of 0.850 inches and a composition of 90% gold and 10% alloy.

  • Each silver dollar would weigh 26.73 grams, have a diameter of 1.500 inches and contain 90% silver and 10% copper.

  • Half dollars would weigh 11.34 grams, have a diameter of 1.205 inches and feature a composition of 8.33 percent nickel with the remaining balance in copper.

Common inscription elements would include the words "Liberty," "In God We Trust," "United States of America," and "E Pluribus Unum." Each of the coins would be produced in both proof and uncirculated qualities for collectors.

Status of H.R. 3818

The Revolutionary War and War of 1812 Battlefields Commemorative Coin Act currently has no cosponsors and had been referred to the House Committee on Financial Services.

For any coin legislation to become law, it must pass in the House, Senate and win the President’s signature.

In commemorative coins for this year, the United States Mint will be issuing 2012 Infantry Soldier Silver Dollars (see designs) and 2012 Star-Spangled Banner coins in gold and silver (see designs).

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

george glazener January 27, 2012 at 2:28 pm

Wow, where to begin? Trenton? Valley Forge? Saratoga? Monmouth Courthouse? Cowpens? Yorktown? And then: Sackets Harbor? Plattsburgh? Ft McHenry? The arson of the White House? New Orleans? This could be a hugely successful series of Commemorative Silver Dollars throughout 2012-2015. Bring it on US MINT!! You really me as your new product development coordinator.

bill January 27, 2012 at 10:09 pm

i’d hire ya lol

and a coin about the Johnny Horton song about the battle of new orleans

down the mississippi to the gulf of mexico

🙂

jim January 28, 2012 at 9:46 am

When was the revolutionary war fought? 1612? 1712? Why are these two joined together? It’s too late for a coin in 2012 or 2013 – where”s Rush Holt’s head anyway – or is he up for reelection and thinks this stupid idea is going to get him reelected? Notice nobody else supports the bill, probably a measure of the number of friends this guy has in Congress.

RonnieBGood January 28, 2012 at 11:58 am

The Revolutionary War was fought twice. After we declared our Independence in 1776 and drove the British out hey came back in 1812 and burned our capital! It was after we drove them out the 2nd time that we were truly Free!! That is why the two are joined together.

I agree it is too late for 2012. This is a good idea but it would be better after the current quarter program is completed.

Munze January 28, 2012 at 5:11 pm

Bills authorizing more and more commemoratives are about the only coinage legislation that can get passed in this unimaginative, uber-politicized Congress. Each pol knows that they can ask for a commem and their colleagues will support them because it’ll be their turn later.

Meanwhile nothing substantive can even make it to a committee let alone out of one. It looks like we’ll have decades more of $1 bills, pennies that cost 1.7¢ and non-existent half dollars. If the current Congress had been around in 1792 we’d still be using shillings and Spanish reales.

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