WASHINGTON — The United States Mint will begin accepting orders for the Abigail Fillmore First Spouse Gold Coin and Abigail Fillmore First Spouse Bronze Medal on March 18, 2010, at noon Eastern Time (ET). The one–half ounce 24–karat gold coin, struck at the United States Mint at West Point, will be available in proof and uncirculated conditions. Pricing for the coins will be based on the United States Mint’s pricing structure for precious metals products. For current pricing information, visit http://www.usmint.gov/pressroom/index.cfm?flash=yes&action=goldplat. The bronze medals, which bear a likeness of the gold coin, will also be available for $5.50 each.
The coin’s obverse (heads side) features a portrait of Abigail Fillmore by United States Mint Sculptor–Engraver Phebe Hemphill. Inscriptions on the obverse are ABIGAIL FILLMORE, IN GOD WE TRUST, LIBERTY, 2010, 13th and 1850–1853, the period during which she was the spouse of the President. The coin’s reverse (tails side), by United States Mint Artistic Infusion Program Master Designer Susan Gamble, depicts Fillmore shelving books in the library she established at the White House. Inscriptions on the reverse are UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, E PLURIBUS UNUM, $10, 1/2 OZ. and .9999 FINE GOLD.
A digital image of the Abigail Fillmore First Spouse Gold Coin is available at http://www.usmint.gov/pressroom/?action=Photo#2010Spouse.
The maximum mintage for the Abigail Fillmore First Spouse Gold Coin is 15,000 across all product options. Customer demand will determine the ratio of proof coins to uncirculated coins produced within the total maximum mintage. Bronze medals bearing a likeness of the gold coin will also be available for $5.50 each. There is no household order limit in effect for either the gold coin or the bronze medal.
Orders for the Abigail Fillmore First Spouse Gold Coin and Medal will be accepted at http://www.usmint.gov/catalog, or 1–800–USA–MINT (872–6468). Hearing– and speech–impaired customers with TTY equipment may order at 1–888–321–MINT (6468). A shipping and handling fee of $4.95 will be applied to all domestic orders.
Abigail Powers Fillmore was born in 1798 in Saratoga County, New York. She developed a passion for learning early in life. Financial circumstances forced her to begin working at the age of 16 as a teacher while she continued her own education. While teaching at the New Hope Academy in Sempronius, New York, she met future husband, Millard Fillmore. After their marriage, she continued to teach for another two years until their first child was born, making her the first presidential spouse to hold a paying job after her marriage. Throughout her life, she continued her zeal for self–improvement by reading voraciously, attending lectures and Congressional debates, and participating in political discussions. Perhaps her most lasting contribution as first lady was her work in establishing a permanent White House library, for which President Fillmore asked Congress to appropriate funds. With $2,000 authorized for the project, Fillmore acquired several hundred volumes to start the collection in a second floor oval parlor, where she enjoyed entertaining such guests as authors Washington Irving, Charles Dickens and William Makepeace Thackeray. She also spent many hours selecting and arranging books for the library.
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 March 18, 2010, noon ET 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, Answer ID #175.