US Coins

Strike ceremony kicks off Greatest Generation program

A ceremonial striking of the Proof 2024-P Greatest Generation silver dollar was held Dec. 13 at the Philadelphia Mint.

Images courtesy of the United States Mint.

A ceremonial striking of the Proof 2024-P Greatest Generation commemorative silver dollar was held Dec. 13 at the Philadelphia Mint.

The authorizing act, Public Law 117-162, signed Aug. 3, 2022, by President Joe Biden, calls for the production and sale by the United States Mint of up to 50,000 .900 fine gold $5 coins in Proof and Uncirculated versions combined. Both gold versions will be struck at the West Point Mint and carry the facility’s W Mint mark.

The act also calls for up to 400,000 silver dollars in Proof and Uncirculated versions combined and up to 750,000 copper-nickel clad half dollars combined in Proof and Uncirculated versions.

The silver dollars will be struck at the Philadelphia Mint with the P Mint mark; Proof clad half dollars will be struck at the San Francisco Mint with its S Mint mark; and the Uncirculated clad half dollar will be struck at the Denver Mint with the D Mint mark.

The U.S. Mint plans to open sales of the Greatest Generation commemorative coins to the public beginning at noon Eastern Time Feb. 29.

In addition to the individual coin offerings, the program also includes a three-coin Proof set containing one example each of the Proof 2024-W Greatest Generation gold $5 coin, Proof 2024-P .999 fine silver dollar and Proof 2024-S copper-nickel clad half dollar.

The purchase price of each numismatic product will include a surcharge — $35 on each gold coin, $10 on each silver dollar and $5 on each clad half dollar, meaning the three-coin Proof set’s surcharge will total $50.

Net surcharges, after the U.S. Mint recovers all of its production and association costs, are to be paid to “the Friends of the National World War II Memorial to support the National Park Service in maintaining and repairing the National World War II Memorial, and for educational and commemorative programs.”

Ceremonial strikes

United States Mint Deputy Director Kristie McNally was joined by Jane Droppa, chairperson of the surcharge recipient, Friends of the National World War II Memorial, and Jeff Reinbold, superintendent, National Mall and Memorial Parks, for the National Park Service. Also among those participating were World War II Army veteran Harry Miller who experienced combat during the Battle of Bulge and Mae Krier, a Rosie the Riveter who worked in manufacturing as part of the war effort. The Rosies were collectively recognized for their service with a congressional gold medal in 2020.

Technical details

The Proof silver dollars were struck on a Graebener GMP 360 coinage press with the dies oriented to strike vertically, the obverse in the upper or hammer die position and the reverse in the lower or anvil die position. The Proof polished planchet received three strikes from the coinage dies to bring up the relief.

After each coin was struck by ceremony participants, the struck coins were individually placed into coin envelopes marked with the name of the person who struck the coin and the numerical order in which the coin was struck. Each person striking a coin has the opportunity to purchase that coin, at the price that will be set for sales to begin in February.

Should a striking ceremony participant opt not to purchase the coin they struck, the coin will be returned to inventory without any differentiation that it was struck during the ceremony. Coins that are purchased will be shipped once the bureau begins shipping other coin orders for the program.

Silver dollar designs

U.S. Mint Artistic Infusion Program designer AIP designer Beth Zaiken designed the silver dollar obverse; it is sculpted by U.S. Mint Medallic Artist Phebe Hemphill.

The obverse design features six figures working together to support the Earth, illustrating the cooperation of each of the military branches at the time (Air Force, Coast Guard, Navy, Army, and Marine Corps) and the Merchant Marine during World War II.

AIP designer Ben Sowards designed the approved silver dollar reverse, sculpted by U.S. Mint Medallic Artist Renata Gordon. The reverse design looks up at the baldacchino, or sculptural canopy, inside a victory pavilion in the Memorial, where four eagles are shown holding a laurel wreath. Inside the wreath is a globe that displays a view that is showing the Pacific Ocean.

$5 gold coins

The approved obverse design for the $5 gold coins is by sculptor Heidi Wastweet, a designer for the U.S. Mint’s Artistic Infusion Program and former member of the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee. Wastweet’s design, to be sculpted by U.S. Mint Medallic Artist Eric David Custer, depicts the Memorial’s Wall of Stars and an olive branch.

The reverse design, by AIP designer Ben Sowards, depicts a folded flag with the inscriptions UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, E PLURIBUS UNUM, WWII MEMORIAL, TO UNITE THE GENERATIONS OF TOMORROW, and FIVE DOLLARS.

The reverse is sculpted by U.S. Mint Chief Engraver Joseph F. Menna.

Clad half dollars

The copper-nickel clad half dollar obverse was designed by AIP designer Elana Hagler and sculpted by U.S. Mint Medallic Artist Craig A. Campbell. The obverse design features a reimagining of the figure of Liberation on the World War II Victory medal, which was awarded to all who served in the Armed Forces during the War.

The clad half dollar reverse is the work of AIP designer Matt Swaim. Swaim’s design will be sculpted by U.S. Mint Medallic Artist John P. McGraw.

Swaim’s design depicts the National World War II Memorial from the point of view of a person walking up a ramp leading to one of the towers.

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