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The Flipside with Robert R. Van Ryzin

Spitting Image
January 27, 2011

Admittedly the Anthony mini dollar, which portrays famed suffragette Susan B. Anthony, never took off as a circulating coin. Some thought it was too close in size to the quarter to be easily identifiable.

Coinage was from 1979-1981 and again in 1999. In 2000, it was replaced by the first of the gold-colored Sacagawea coins.

I can't say I was ever a fan of the Anthony dollar, but I've always thought any criticism of the depiction couldn't really be directed at the designer, then Mint chief engraver Frank Gasparro.

He favored a different design harking back to the original Flowing Hair Liberty for the obverse along with a dramatic eagle in flight for the reverse. Legislation, however, called for Anthony to be shown on the coin.

As can be seen from this depiction featuring original pictures of Anthony and the various stages of the coinage design process, his portrayal was accurate.


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Recent Comments
On August 23, 2014 daisy said
Anthony dollar and your passion for it, I do not really know much but everything can be brought to and you feel good right. Help us to understand more. Anthony dollar.

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About the Author
Robert R. Van Ryzin has been a coin collector for 30 years. He has served as editor of Krause Publications Coins and Coin Prices magazines since 1994. He joined the firm in 1986 after obtaining a master of fine arts degree in history from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh. Prior to becoming a magazine editor, he worked on World Coin News as a staff member and later served as managing editor of Numismatic News. Van Ryzin, whose specialty is U.S. coinage history, is also the award-winning author of the book Crime of 1873: The Comstock Connection (Krause Publications, 2001), as well as two earlier titles, Twisted Tails: Sifted Fact, Fantasy and Fiction from U.S. Coin History (Krause Publications, 1995) and Striking Impressions: A Visual Guide to Collecting U.S. Coins (Krause Publications, 1992).

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