Posted on June 28, 2017
The United States Mint’s celebration of its 225th Anniversary kicked off in January with the introduction of the 2017 Proof American Gold Liberty Coin. The first coin in a planned series that will feature different depictions of Liberty with each release, the US Mint is expanding its offering to include a collection of five, not four as originally stated, silver medals.
With all four coining facilities called into duty for the production of these silver medals, there will now be five silver medals available in four different finishes. The 2017 American Liberty Silver Medal will be struck by the Philadelphia Mint in two different versions. A single proof silver medal is expected from the mint sometime in June. More exciting is the four-medal set that will be introduced by the US Mint later in 2017.
The single-issue proof in the collection is struck to meet standard proof coining guidelines at the Philadelphia Mint facility. This medal will feature a “P” mint mark on its reverse face along with the image of the American bald eagle. Meanwhile, the obverse will feature the same image of Liberty as a woman with African-American features as shown on the American Gold Liberty Coin from the mint.
All four mint facilities in the US Mint system will contribute a stunning specimen to the 2017 American Silver Liberty 4-Medal Set. The Philadelphia Mint will strike, in addition to the single-issue proof, a beautiful Reverse Proof medal for the set. A standard proof medal will also be available in the set, but will be struck at the San Francisco Mint and feature the “S” mint mark.
What’s more interesting is the medals to be struck by the West Point and Denver Mint facilities. The Denver Mint will strike an uncirculated version of the 2017 American Silver Liberty Medal complete with a “D” mint mark. The West Point Mint will produced a Liberty Medal with the “W” mint mark in what the mint is calling an Enhanced Uncirculated finish.
The San Francisco S-Proof medal in the collection will feature the US Mint’s standard use of frosted devices against a mirrored background field. Likewise, the P-Reverse Proof medals will have mirrored devices against a frosted background field. The D-Uncirculated will have the US Mint’s standard uncirculated treatment. The medals are struck on planchets that have been burnished in a tumbler with a steel media, as well as a cleaning and brightening solution. Each one is dried before it is struck. The W-Enhanced Uncirculated medals however, will be handled the same as the uncirculated, with extra treatment. Each burnished planchet will be struck with dies featuring specific die elements subjected to varying intensities of laser frosted and unique polishing techniques for a brilliant visual finish.
All 2017 American Silver Liberty Medals from the United States Mint feature the same designs from the American Liberty Gold Coin. On the obverse is the left-profile portrait of Liberty with African-American features. Instead of the traditional use of a wreath of laurels for her crown, this Liberty wears the crown of stars found on the Statue of Freedom atop the dome of the U.S. Capitol building in Washington DC. This design was created by Mint Artistic Infusion Program Designer Justin Kunz and sculpted by Mint Sculptor-Engraver Phebe Hemphill.
The reverse of the coin is the powerful image of an American bald eagle flight. You’ll note every facet of the bird’s feathers visible and it sharp eyes keenly watching the horizon as it flies through the coin’s design field. The reverse field has its own set of creators, with Mint Artistic Infusion Program designer Chris T. Costello creating the image and Mint Sculptor-Engraver Michael Gaudioso bringing it to life.
The American Silver Liberty medals are 1 oz specimens are 40.6 millimeters in diameter and struck on the same kind of blanks used by the mint for American Silver Eagle coins.
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