WASHINGTON — The United States Mint will release a gold coin in honor of Sarah Polk at 12 noon Eastern Time (ET) on September 3, 2009. The one–half ounce 24–karat Sarah Polk First Spouse Gold Coin will be available in proof and uncirculated versions. Pricing will be based on the United States Mint pricing structure, available at http://www.usmint.gov/pressroom/index.cfm?flash=yes&action=goldplat
Both the obverse (heads side) and the reverse (tails) of the Sarah Polk First Spouse Gold Coin were designed and sculpted by United States Mint Sculptor–Engraver Phebe Hemphill. The coin’s obverse features her portrait and the inscriptions SARAH POLK, 1845–1849, IN GOD WE TRUST, LIBERTY and 2009. The coin’s reverse depicts her working in the White House in support of her husband’s career. Inscriptions on the reverse are UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, E PLURIBUS UNUM, $10, ½ OZ. and .9999 FINE GOLD. An image of the Sarah Polk First Spouse Gold Coin is available at http://www.usmint.gov/pressroom/index.cfm?action=Photo#2009Spouse.
Mintage for the Sarah Polk First Spouse Gold Coin is limited to 40,000 units across both the proof and uncirculated product options. Customer demand will determine the ratio of coins produced. Orders will be limited to 10 coins per product option per household for the first week of sales. The United States Mint will reevaluate this limit following the initial sales period and either extend, adjust or eliminate it.
Bronze medals bearing the likeness of the designs featured on the gold coin also will be available for $3.50 each. There is no mintage or order limit for these bronze medals. Collectors may purchase the Sarah Polk First Spouse Gold Coin and Medal at the United States Mint’s secure Web site, http://www.usmint.gov, or by calling 1–800–USA–MINT (872–6468). Hearing– and speech–impaired customers with TTY equipment may call 1–888–321–MINT (6468). A shipping and handling fee of $4.95 will be applied to all domestic orders.
Sarah Childress Polk received an education traditionally available only to the most privileged young women of her time, which made her especially fitted to assist a husband with a political career. She devoted her married life to husband James K. Polk’s political career, organizing his campaigns, writing speeches, handling his correspondence, and developing a network of valuable political friendships. Skilled in tactful conversation, Mrs. Polk enjoyed wide popularity and deep respect. She instituted many changes at the White House, including its refurbishment and the installation of gas lighting.
The United States Mint, created by Congress in 1792, is the Nation’s sole manufacturer of legal tender coinage. Its primary mission is to produce an adequate volume of circulating coinage for the Nation to conduct its trade and commerce. The United States Mint also produces proof, uncirculated, and commemorative coins; Congressional Gold Medals; and silver, gold and platinum bullion coins.
Note: To ensure that all members of the public have fair and equal access to United States Mint products, orders placed prior to the official on–sale date and time of noon (ET) on September 3, 2009, shall not be deemed accepted by the United States Mint and will not be honored. For more information, please review the United States Mint’s Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), Answer ID #175.