US Coins

U.S. Mint's first coins with color on sale Aug. 28

The obverse of the Uncirculated Basketball half dollar and the reverse of the Proof silver dollar will be colorized post-strike.

Images courtesy of the United States Mint

The wait is almost over for the first officially colorized U.S. coins, the 2020 Basketball Hall of Fame half dollar and silver dollar coins, with the United States Mint to open sales at noon Eastern Time Aug. 28.

Images of the colorized coins were not made available in time for publication with this article.

Colorization of the two commemorative coin issues is being executed by an outside vendor, to whom the coins are shipped from the U.S. Mint production facilities after the coins are struck.

The maximum mintage is 75,000 for each issue.

The 2020-D Basketball copper-nickel clad half dollar being colorized is first struck with an Uncirculated finish at the Denver Mint and bears the facility’s D Mint mark. (The colorized version of the half dollar was previously announced by the U.S. Mint to be the Proof 2020-S version from the San Francisco Mint.)

The .999 fine silver dollar being colorized is first struck at the Philadelphia Mint with a Proof finish and bears the P Mint mark.

The coins bear the common obverse and common reverse designs approved for the three-coin commemorative program, which also includes the gold $5 half eagle.

The obverse of each coin is concave and the reverse convex.

The obverse design, according to the U.S. Mint’s narrative, “features three different figures all reaching for the ball in unison, suggesting how the sport has brought together millions of diverse people around the world through a simple, universal, and unifying athletic experience. Their arms are intentionally elongated, just slightly, to emphasize the full exertion of physical and mental effort required to excel in the game. The rim and net are presented as subtle background elements to complement the primary figures.”

The obverse, selected from designs submitted during a public competition, was designed by U.S. Mint Artistic Infusion Program artist Justin Kunz and sculpted by U.S. Mint Medallic Artist Michael Gaudioso.

The reverse design, whose theme was mandated under the provisions of the enabling legislation, Public Law 115-343, was designed by AIP artist Donna Weaver, who is also a retired U.S. Mint sculptor-engraver.

Weaver’s design was sculpted by U.S. Mint Medallic Artist Phebe Hemphill.

Post-production

No colorization is planned for either the Proof or Uncirculated 2020-W gold $5 issue.

Neither is colorization being executed on the Uncirculated 2020-P dollar and the Proof 2020-S half dollar.

Elements to be colorized are on the obverse side of the Uncirculated half dollar, and on the reverse of the Proof silver dollar.

Todd Martin, the acting director of the U.S. Mint’s Office of Corporate Communications, told Coin World July 8 that the Federal Register notice announcing pricing for the two colorized coins is not yet approved for publishing.

On sale from the U.S. Mint since June 4, the non-colorized version of the Uncirculated 2020-D Basketball half dollar is currently offered at $42, and of the Proof 2020-P dollar, at $74.

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