Dear Mr. Ryder:
Due to the Novel Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic and national health emergency, the Commission of Fine Arts cancelled its public meeting scheduled for 19 March 2020, and the Commission members were not able to hear a presentation on the 2021 coins in the American Innovation series. However, the Commission members have voted by poll to provide the following recommendations and comments, based on their review of the submitted design alternatives as well as consideration of the preferences of the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee (CCAC) and the state governors.
New Hampshire. Consistent with the preference of the governor, the Commission members recommended alternative #1 as the best of the designs intended to honor the invention of the first home video game console.
Virginia. Consistent with the preference of the CCAC, the Commission members recommended alternative #5 as the best of the designs commemorating the Chesapeake Bay Bridge–Tunnel, which they characterized as a marvel of international engineering. They noted that this coin presented a strange choice between technological innovation and our national civil rights history, and they recommended that the U.S. Mint clarify its definition of innovation for this series.
New York. Consistent with the preference of the CCAC, the Commission members recommended alternative #5, depicting a mule-drawn barge on the Erie Canal.
North Carolina. While offering some support for alternative #4, the Commission members agreed with the CCAC’s request for the development of additional design alternatives for further review.
These recommendations will be placed on the administrative agenda for confirmation at the Commission’s next public meeting. As always, the staff is available to assist you with future submissions.
/s/Thomas E. Luebke, FAIA
David Ryder, Director
United States Mint
801 9th Street, NW, 8th Floor
Washington, DC 20220