WASHINGTON — The United States Mint announced today that 2004–dated 5–cent coins (nickels), the first of the Westward Journey Nickel Series and featuring a rendition of the reverse of the original Jefferson Peace Medal (1801) by John Reich, will go on sale in two–roll sets (40 coins per roll) — including one Philadelphia and one Denver mint mark coin roll each — and in bags of 500 and 1,000 coins, beginning March 1, 2004, at noon (E.T.). It is the first time in 66 years (1938) that the Nation will receive a newly–designed nickel.
The new reverse of the 2004 nickel features a rendition of the reverse of the original Jefferson Peace Medal commissioned for Lewis and Clark’s expedition, depicting clasped hands, signifying peace, and the inscriptions “Louisiana Purchase” and “1803,” commemorating the bicentennial of President Jefferson’s historic land purchase from France. The medals were presented to Native American chiefs and other important leaders as tokens of goodwill.
Each 40–coin roll in the two–roll set is wrapped in a specially–designed United States Mint paper coin wrap that prominently displays “Westward Journey Nickel Series™”, a “P” or “D” representing the roll’s mint of origin, the year “2004” and “$2” representing the face value of its contents. Each 500–coin bag is marked with “$25.00” and each 1,000–coin bag is marked with “$50.00” to indicate the face value of each bag’s contents. Both bags display “Westward Journey Nickel Series™” and the mint of its origin. Two–roll sets will sell for $8.95, bags of 500 coins for $45.95 and bags of 1,000 coins for $79.95.
These two–roll sets and bags, featuring circulation quality nickels and struck on our main production floors at the United States Mint facilities at Philadelphia and Denver, will be shipped directly to customers. There is no order limit on these products. Please allow approximately two to three weeks for delivery.
Customers can purchase the nickels in two–roll sets and bags by using the United States Mint’s secure website, www.usmint.gov, or by calling 1–800–USA–MINT. For more information about this ordering method, please visit www.usmint.gov. Hearing– and speech–impaired customers may order by calling 1–888–321–MINT (6468). A shipping and handling fee of $4.95 per order will be added to all domestic orders. Bags of 500 and 1,000 coins will each have an additional charge of $7.95 per bag because of their weight and size.
On April 23, 2003, President Bush signed into law legislation authorizing the Secretary of the Treasury to change the design of the nickel through 2005 to commemorate the bicentennials of the Louisiana Purchase and the Lewis and Clark expedition.
The obverse (heads side) of the nickels will feature the current likeness of Thomas Jefferson. A likeness of Jefferson will remain on the obverse throughout the nickel series, and his home at Monticello will return to the reverse in 2006, although both the obverse and reverse may not be the current likenesses of Jefferson and Monticello.
On the second 2004–dated nickel, which will begin circulating this fall, the reverse image will be an angled view of the keelboat with full sail that transported the Lewis and Clark expedition members and supplies as they traveled the rivers of the Louisiana Territory in search of a northwest passage to the Pacific Ocean. Captains Meriwether Lewis and William Clark are in full uniform in the bow.
The nickel bearing the current likeness of Thomas Jefferson on the obverse (heads) and Monticello on the reverse (tails) was first issued on November 15, 1938. Felix Schlag won a design contest for the Jefferson nickel from among nearly 400 artists and was awarded $1,000 for his design.
Created by Congress in 1792, the United States Mint is the manufacturer of legal tender coinage for the United States. In FY 2003, the United States Mint manufactured approximately 11.4 billion coins and generated revenue of $1.4 billion.