Legislation was signed into law by President Obama on October 8, 2010, authorizing 2013-dated clad, silver and gold coins to commemorate America’s Five-Star Generals who taught or studied at the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College (CGSC).
Those selected to be honored in the bill, which is now Public Law 111-261, include Generals George Marshall, Douglas MacArthur, Dwight Eisenhower, Henry “Hap” Arnold, and Omar Bradley.
All five generals not only are tied in one fashion or another to the Command and General Staff College, but each also played integral roles in the American and Allied victory of World War II over opposing forces.
The 2013 Five-Star Generals Commemorative Coin will also celebrate the 132nd anniversary of the founding of the United States Army Command and General Staff College. Located in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, the college was established in 1881 and was described in the authorizing legislation with this statement:
"The Command and General Staff College has had a salutatory effect on many fields of battle by providing its officer student bodies the necessary skills of battle management, leadership development, and the most modern and effective command and staff action procedures, all of which have been key to this Nations’ success in its many conflicts which, thereby, have preserved its freedoms and way of life."
Known as the 5-Star Generals Commemorative Coin Act, Public Law 111-261 requires three different denominations to be produced by the United States Mint — a half dollar clad coin, a one dollar silver coin and a $5 dollar gold coin. Each of these will feature the standard design requirements for American coinage, including their face value, an inscription for the year, and the words ‘Liberty’, ‘In God We Trust’, ‘United States of America’, and ‘E Pluribus Unum’. Aside from that, the only other design element established by the Act dictates that portraits of the honored Generals be shown on each coin.
Coin specifications are typical for the commemoratives:
- $5 gold coins will be be struck from 90% gold to a weight of 8.359 grams and a diameter of 0.850 inches
- $1 silver coins will be composed of 90% silver to a weight of 26.73 grams and a diameter of 1.50 inches
- 50c clad coins will weigh 11.34 grams and have a diameter of 1.205 inches
Both collector proof and uncirculated versions have been authorized. The U.S. Mint is required to use one facility to produce the proof versions and at least one other facility must be used to strike the uncirculated coins. Maximum mintages have also been put in place for each denomination: 100,000 $5 gold coins; 500,000 $1 silver coins and 750,000 half dollar clad coins.
The 5-Star Generals Commemorative Coin Act was introduced in the U.S. House by Rep. Dennis Moore [D-KS] on February 25, 2009. The House passed it by a voice vote on May 20, 2010, where it then waited action in the U.S. Senate. It passed there by Unanimous Consent on September 28, 2010.
These 2013 Five-Star Generals coins will join commemoratives honoring the founding of the Girl Scout Organization which are also scheduled for release in 2013.