The United States Mint has released the final designs for the 2019 American Innovation Dollar coins. The four coins, representing Delaware, Georgia, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania, are the first full year of production for the latest dollar coin. This followed the introduction coin last year, representing the first patent in the United States signed by George Washington.
The new series is set to continue through 2032 with each coin having a common Obverse and a unique Reverse for each state and United States territories. In all, 57 coins will be released as part of the program. You can read more about it in this Coin History article.
The first of the new American Innovation dollar coins will be for Delaware. It is designed by Donna Weaver and sculpted by Joseph Menna.
The American Innovation $1 Coin representing Delaware honors internationally recognized astronomer Annie Jump Cannon, who invented a system for classifying the stars still used today. Despite a hearing impairment, she advanced her education, gained recognition as a pioneer in science, and became the first woman to receive an honorary doctorate from Oxford University.United States Mint
Next will be Pennsylvania. This coin’s Reverse is designed by Richard Masters and is sculpted by Joseph Menna.
The American Innovation $1 Coin representing Pennsylvania honors the discovery of the polio vaccine in 1953 by Dr. Jonas Salk and his team.United States Mint
The third coin in for 2019 will represent New Jersey. It will focus on the invention of the light bulb with its Reverse design. The design itself is the creation of Paul C. Balan while the sculptor is Phebe Hemphill. Ms. Hemphill is also the sculptor of the series’ common Obverse.
The American Innovation $1 Coin representing New Jersey recognizes the invention of the light bulb.
United States Mint
Early work on electric light bulbs began in the 1830s, but these early ones had very short lifespans, used too much energy, or were simply too expensive to produce. It wasn’t until the innovations of Thomas Edison and his researchers that light bulbs were made available to the public. By 1879, the team had managed to produce a bulb with a filament that could last 14.5 hours. With continued work, they managed to improve to a filament with a lifetime of 1,200 hours.
The fourth and final coin in the series for 2019 will represent Georgia and its Trustees’ Garden in Savannah. The Reverse of the coin is designed by Emily Damstra and it is sculpted by Michael Gaudioso.
The American Innovation $1 Coin representing Georgia honors the Trustees’ Garden, established by James Oglethorpe in the early 1730s.
General James Edward Oglethorpe was a British soldier, Member of Parliament, and philanthropist who founded the Colony of Georgia. He established the Trustee Garden in Savannah in 1734, two years after the founding of the Georgia Trust, the corporate body that governed the colony from 1732 until 1752.
United States Mint
The garden comprised about 10 acres to the east of the area settled at that time. Dedicated to botany and agriculture, it reflected the scientific and commercial aspirations of the trustees and their backers in England. Its growth and demise over the next 20 years reflected the realities of climate, geography, and the lack of people on the ground, as well as consistent support from London.
While the United States Mint has just announced these designs, it is likely they have known these final designs for some time and have been working on getting ready for production. Given there is only a little over four months left in 2019, production will need to ramp up quickly to hit the release this year.
In addition to the Coin History article I referenced earlier, you can also read about the series on the US Mint’s site.