Numismatic Guaranty Corporation® (NGC) has officially licensed the Astronaut Scholarship Foundation (ASF) logo for special NGC certification labels that celebrate the U.S. Mint’s Apollo 11 50th Anniversary Commemorative Coins. The coins go on sale January 24, 2019.
The Apollo 11 50th Anniversary Commemorative Coins are among the most highly anticipated U.S. Mint issues of the last decade. The coins are particularly noteworthy for their curved design, which resembles the view of the moon’s surface from an astronaut’s helmet.
Clad half dollars, silver dollars in one-ounce and five-ounce sizes and gold five dollar coins are being struck. Notably, both the one-ounce and five-ounce silver dollars are being struck in .999 fine silver instead of the usual .900 fineness. This is the first time that a US commemorative silver dollar has been struck in .999 fineness, and this composition will be reflected with a notation on the NGC certification label for the one-ounce dollars.
Also significant is the curved silver five-ounce coin. The largest curved coin ever issued by the U.S. Mint with a diameter of three inches, its production presented numerous challenges. These were ultimately overcome and the Apollo 11 silver five-ounce is expected to become one of the most desirable US modern coins in recent memory.
The legislation that authorized the Apollo 11 coins designated the ASF as one of three organizations that would benefit from a surcharge applied to the sale of these coins. The additional beneficiaries are the Smithsonian Institution’s National Air and Space Museum and the Astronaut Memorial Foundation.
ASF was created in 1984 by the six surviving Mercury program astronauts as well as the widow of the seventh. Each year, ASF provides more than 50 scholarships to outstanding college students in science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
The six manned flights of the Mercury program enabled NASA to master the technology necessary to put astronauts in orbit. This critical step paved the way for the Gemini and Apollo programs that followed, culminating with the Apollo 11 moon landing in July 1969. That historic mission is celebrated by the coins being released this month.
The NGC ASF label is the default label for Apollo 11 50th Anniversary Commemorative Coins submitted to NGC and carries an automatic $5 fee. A royalty will be paid to the ASF by NGC for each label used.
"NGC’s leadership in third-party coin certification made it an ideal partner to collaborate with ASF to promote its important mission and the Apollo 11 50th Anniversary Commemorative Coin Program," says Tammy Sudler, President & CEO of ASF. "NGC-certified Apollo 11 Commemorative Coins encapsulated with the NGC ASF label are unique and attractive collectibles that not only honor one of history’s greatest achievements but also support the mission of ASF."
"The Apollo 11 50th Anniversary Commemorative Coins celebrate one of mankind’s greatest triumphs," adds Mark Salzberg, NGC Chairman and NGC Grading Finalizer. "NGC is pleased to work with the Astronaut Scholarship Foundation to honor this event and these coins with an attractive label that is sure to appeal to coin collectors and space enthusiasts alike."
For detailed submission instructions, visit NGCcoin.com/ASF.
NGC has certified more than 42 million coins, medals and tokens. Founded in 1987, the company provides accurate, consistent and impartial assessments of authenticity and grade. For more information about NGC and its grading services, visit NGCcoin.com.