Royal Canadian Mint launches galactic series
- Published: May 31, 2016, 6 AM
Though the Enterprise may have flown under the flag of the United Federation of Planets, it is the Royal Canadian Mint that is celebrating the 50th anniversary of the original Star Trek television series with 11 new coins.
Canadian actor William Shatner (who played Capt. James T. Kirk) was on hand for the May 12 unveiling of coins at the Canada Aviation and Space Museum.
The program includes three coins depicting the signature vessel of the interstellar space travelers, the Enterprise.
In addition, the program features four Proof half-ounce character and technology silver $10 coins, three Proof 1-ounce silver $20 coins honoring famous episodes, and one gold $200 coin with a unique shape.
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Several of the coins that have been announced will be released sporadically over the summer, with the capstone to the collection — the Proof .9999 fine gold $200 coin — not available until Sept. 6.
A productive Enterprise
Leading the way is the Specimen silver $20 coin in the RCM’s $20-for-$20 program. The reverse of the coin features the famous space vessel helmed by Capt. Kirk, soaring through space.
The Enterprise also appears on a colorful, Specimen finish 25-cent coin issued as part of a coin-and-stamp set.
The blue color recreates the gaseous appearance of a nebula cloud, and six different views of the Enterprise allow the viewer to examine the vessel from every angle: overhead, underside, bow, aft, starboard and portside. The engraved center showcases the distinctive arrowhead-shaped Starfleet insignia.
Another colorful silver $20 coin featuring the ship recreates a scene from the 1968 episode “I, Mudd.”
The coin’s three-quarter view allows for a full glimpse of the orbiting vessel’s saucer section and engineering hull, while the ship’s twin warp nacelles are visible at the rear. The yellow, gold and red-brown colors of the episode’s Class K planet appear against a dark expanse of space in the background.
Character, Technology coins
Leading the character and technology coins is probably the most identifiable character from the series, Shatner’s Kirk.
The first coin features a colorful image of Capt. Kirk, set against a portion of the starship, which appears in an overhead view of its saucer-shaped hull and twin warp nacelles. Captain Kirk and his ship are framed by the unmistakable outline of Starfleet’s insignia.
The second character and technology coin is due for release July 5 and celebrates a precursor to today’s smartphones, the communicator featured on Star Trek.
The communicator was often used by the characters to contact Chief Engineer Montgomery “Scotty” Scott (played by Canadian actor James Doohan) when about to request to be beamed back on board the Enterprise. Both Scotty and the device appear together on this coin.
The tricorder and Communications Officer Uhura (portrayed by Nichelle Nichols) appear on the third coin, which is scheduled for release Aug. 2.
The tricorder, used for sensor scanning as well as data recording and analysis, is one of the most famous pieces of Trek tech and was frequently used by members of a landing party, including Uhura.
The final character and technology coin honors First Officer Spock, and features the futuristic phaser introduced in The Original Series.
Scheduled for release Sept. 6, this coin shows Spock wearing a blue Starfleet uniform and in a state of alert, as he points his phaser pistol toward an unseen threat.
Famous Episodes coins
The first of three episode coins due for later release honors the 1967 episode, “The City on the Edge of Forever.”
On this coin, color brings to life the engraved image of Capt. Kirk and Mr. Spock (portrayed by Leonard Nimoy); both in their Starfleet uniforms, they stand among the ruins before the oversized, ring-shaped entity known as the Guardian of Forever. The coin is set for release Aug. 2.
Another coin in this series honoring “Mirror, Mirror,” an episode from 1967, is scheduled for release Sept. 6.
For this second coin, selective color enhances the engraved image of an alternate version of Mr. Spock performing a Vulcan mind meld on Dr. Leonard “Bones” McCoy (portrayed by DeForest Kelley). According to the RCM, “McCoy bears a fearful expression while Spock sports an uncharacteristic goatee and altered uniform — evidence that the away team is in a mirror universe where their fellow crewmembers are behaving very differently.”
The final episode coin, celebrating “The Trouble With Tribbles” from 1967, is scheduled for release Oct. 4.
Its reverse design recreates a key scene that has remained a fan favorite. Capt. Kirk appears in his green Starfleet uniform. He stands half-buried in a pile of small, furry creatures known as Tribbles, which have fallen out of an overhead compartment.
One gold coin
The final coin in the RCM’s monumental (or that galactic?) series of commemorative coins honors one of the most cherished and recognized emblems of Star Trek, the Delta Shield insignia.
Struck in .9999 fine gold, the RCM is issuing the world’s first delta-shaped coin.
In the gold tone of the original series’ insignia, the Delta Shield displays the elongated star symbol that identified crew assigned to command.
The coin is scheduled for release Sept. 6.
The obverses of all these coins feature the 2003 effigy of Queen Elizabeth II, designed by Canadian artist Susanna Blunt.
The $20-for-$20 coin measures 27 millimeters in diameter and weighs 7.96 grams. It has a mintage limit of 300,000 pieces and retails for $20 Canadian.
The coin-and-stamp set has an unlimited mintage and retails for $34.95 Canadian.
The half-ounce silver $10 character coins each measure 34 millimeters in diameter. Each has a mintage limit of 12,500 pieces and retails for $54.95 Canadian.
The 1-ounce silver $20 coins measure 38 millimeters in diameter. They have a mintage limit of 11,500 per design; each retails for $109.95 Canadian.
The gold $200 coin weighs 16.2 grams, is limited to a mintage of 1,500 coins and retails for $1,299.95 Canadian.
Distributor Talisman Coins is accepting orders in U.S. dollars for all of the coins except the gold one, with delivery of six of the coins to occur once they are released from the RCM.
The silver $20-for-$20 coin retails for $19.95, and the coin-and-stamp set is $27.95.
The character and technology silver $10 coins each retail for $39.95, with a four-coin set offered for $154.95.
The four colorful silver $20 coins are each priced at $79.95, with a three-coin set of the three classic episodes coins available for $234.95.
Quantity discounts are available for these coins, with varying discounts depending upon the quantity purchased.
To order, visit the distributor website.
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