On February 4, 1801, John Marshall became the fourth Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. During John Marshall's 34 years as Chief Justice, the Supreme Court grew in strength and value.
In 1803, only two years after Marshall became Chief Justice, the Court gave its now-famous opinion on the case called Marbury versus Madison. This decision held that the judicial branch of the government has the right to overturn an act of Congress if the Court finds that the act does not agree with the U.S. Constitution. This principle, called "judicial review," is still an important principle in Constitutional law.
Marshall was born on the Virginia frontier. He fought in the Revolutionary War before he became a successful lawyer and, later, was elected to the House of Representatives. President John Adams appointed him Secretary of State and then Chief Justice.
The United States Mint is celebrating the 250th anniversary of Chief Justice John Marshall's birth by creating a new commemorative coin. This coin not only pays tribute to Marshall and the Supreme Court of the United States, but to the entire judicial branch of our government. No coin has ever featured a Chief Justice or the Supreme Court itself.
No more than 400,000 of these coins are being minted. Some of the charges from the sale of these coins support the Supreme Court Historical Society.
The British colonies in America were getting ready for war in 1775. Even with very few ships, the Continental Congress allowed its military leaders to raise two battalions of Marines. Those two battalions were the beginning of today's United States Marine Corps.
From the nation's birth until now, the Marines have proudly served and defended the values and freedoms at the heart of America. From the American Revolution to Operation Iraqi Freedom, the Marines have been part of all the military milestones in our history.
But this world-class fighting force is not only about fighting. The Corps and its members sum up their values in three words: honor, courage, and commitment. Always deciding to be honest and to bravely do the right thing is the standard that Marines strive to live and work by.
This year, the United States Mint honors the Marine Corps and the thousands of Marines who have sacrificed to serve our nation since the Corps was founded. A new silver dollar proudly commemorates the 230th anniversary of the United States Marine Corps.
Part of the price of the coin is set aside for creating a National Museum of the Marine Corps at Quantico, Virginia. The Marine Corps Heritage Foundation is working with the Marine Corps to develop this museum.
Return to Coins and Medals