WASHINGTON — Today, Native American Heritage Day, the United States Mint is releasing the designs for the new 2009 Native American $1 Coin. Public Law 110–82 directs the Secretary of the Treasury to mint and issue the new $1 coin to recognize Native Americans for their contributions to the history and development of our Nation. The new coin, slated to be released into circulation in January 2009, will circulate along with the United States Mint’s Presidential $1 Coins.
“We are proud to produce the Native American $1 Coin,” said United States Mint Director Ed Moy. “When Americans use this coin, we hope they reflect on the tremendous contributions Native Americans have made, and continue to make, to our Nation.”
Like the Presidential $1 Coins, the Native American $1 Coins will be minted in the distinctive gold–colored alloy. The coin’s obverse (heads side) will feature the Golden Dollar’s striking image of Sacagawea–the young Shoshone woman who accompanied Meriwether Lewis and William Clark on their historic expedition–by sculptor Glenna Goodacre. Inscriptions on the obverse are LIBERTY and IN GOD WE TRUST. The year, mint mark and E PLURIBUS UNUM are incused on the coin’s edge.
The reverse (tails side) of the Native American $1 Coin will bear a new design each year. The featured design for 2009, by United States Mint Sculptor–Engraver Norman E. Nemeth, is based on an agricultural theme, a significant part of Native American culture. This design depicts a Native American woman planting seeds in a field of corn, beans and squash, representing the Three Sisters method of planting. Inscriptions on the reverse are UNITED STATES OF AMERICA and $1.
Throughout the Presidential $1 Coin Program, the Native American $1 Coins will be issued in chronological order, to the greatest extent possible, of the events or persons featured. The Secretary of the Treasury approves the designs after consulting with the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, the Congressional Native American Caucus of the House of Representatives, the National Congress of American Indians, the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee, and the Commission of Fine Arts.
The total quantity of Presidential $1 Coins and Native American $1 Coins minted and issued into circulation by the United States Mint will be sufficient to meet the Nation’s needs. As required by law, at least 20 percent of all $1 coins minted and issued in any year will be Native American $1 Coins.
To view and download digital images of the 2009 Native American $1 Coin, go to: /coins/%coin-program%/2009-native-american-coin.