On this day 204 years ago, Francis Scott Key was awakened aboard the HMS Tonnant in Baltimore Harbor to see the tattered, but still present flag flying over Fort McHenry. Today’s LOOK BACK talks about the history of that day and, rather than talking about the legislation, add a little information about the Star Spangled Banner commemorative coin.
Fort McHenry (via Wikipedia)
The War of 1812 had been running for two years when the fighting escalated in Baltimore Harbor around Fort McHenry. American Prisoner Exchange Agent Colonel John Stuart Skinner sent by the War Department to negotiate the release of Dr. William Beanes. Dr. Beanes was allegedly mistakenly arrested with a group of rowdies as he walked to his home.
On Skinner’s way to meet Vice Admiral Alexander Cochrane, Rear Admiral Sir George Cockburn, and Major General Robert Ross on the HMS Tonnant, he stopped at the home of noted lawyer Francis Scott Key and asked for his assistance.
Col. Skinner and Key were welcomed by the British command on September 13, 1814 and was invited to stay for dinner. After secure the release of Dr. Beanes but were not allowed to return to Baltimore. The British felt that Col. Skinner and Key had learned too much about the British forces. Col. Skinner, Key, and Dr. Beanes were provided guest accommodations on the HMS Tonnant.
The Battle of Baltimore began after dinner and raged overnight through the next morning. On September 14, 1814, when the smoke cleared, Key saw the Stars and Stripes still flying over Fort McHenry. Following the battle. Col. Skinner, Key, and Dr. Beanes were allowed to return to Baltimore on their own boat. During the trip, Key wrote a poem entitled “The Defence of Fort McHenry”
On September 20, 1814, Key had the poem published in the newspaper Patriot. After publication, Key set the poem to the tune of John Stafford Smith’s “The Anacreontic Song,” a popular drinking song written for London’s Anacreontic Society. The combination was renamed “The Star Spangled Banner.”
“The Star Spangled Banner” was first recognized by the Navy in 1889. In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson signed an executive order to recognize “The Star-Spangled Banner” as the national anthem. Finally, President Herbert Hoover singed a congressional bill officially making the song the United State’s National Anthem (36 U.S.C. §301).
In 2012, the U.S. Mint issued two coins as part of the Star-Spangled Banner Commemorative Coin Program (authorized by Public Law 111-232). The $5 gold coin “depicts a naval battle scene from the War of 1812, with an American sailing ship in the foreground and a damaged and fleeing British ship in the background” on the obverse and “the first words of the Star-Spangled Banner anthem, O say can you see, in Francis Scott Key’s handwriting against a backdrop of 15 stars and 15 stripes, representing the Star-Spangled Banner flag.”
2012 Star-Spangled Banner Gold Commemorative Obverse depicts a naval battle scene from the War of 1812, with an American sailing ship in the foreground and a damaged and fleeing British ship in the background. Designed by Donna Weaver and engraved by Joseph Menna.
2012 Star-Spangled Banner Gold Commemorative Reverse Depicts the first words of the Star-Spangled Banner anthem, O say can you see, in Francis Scott Key’s handwriting against a backdrop of 15 stars and 15 stripes, representing the Star-Spangled Banner flag. Designed by Richard Masters and engraved by Joseph Menna.
The obverse of the silver $1 coin “depicts Lady Liberty waving the 15-star, 15-stripe Star-Spangled Banner flag with Fort McHenry in the background.” The reverse shows the waving of a modern American Flag.
2012 Star-Spangled Banner Silver Commemorative Obverse depicts Lady Liberty waving the 15-star, 15-stripe Star-Spangled Banner flag with Fort McHenry in the background. Designed by Joel Iskowitz and engraved by Phebe Hemphill.
2012 Star-Spangled Banner Silver Commemorative Reverse depicts a waving modern American flag. Designed by William C. Burgard III and engraved by Don Everhart.
The official launch of the 2012 Star-Spangled Banner Commemorative Coin Program was launched at Fort McHenry in Baltimore. You can read about that launch here.
We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.
John Trumbull’s Declaration of Independence hangs in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda. It was used as the model for the reverse of the $2 Federal Reserve Note.
On July 1, 1867, the British colonies of Canada, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick were joined together as a single kingdom within the British Empire then known as the Dominion of Canada. It was the first step to gaining full independence from Great Britain. Canada would gain its full independence in 1931.
Often referred to as Canada’s Birthday, July 1 was celebrated as Dominion Day until 1982 when it was renamed as Canada Day. Celebrations around Canada fully recognize this day as being the one where Canada is celebrated. Canadians, both in the country and around the world will raise a Molson’s in honor of O Canada!
To our friends from north of our border, and yes, contrary to what others might say you are our friends…
HAPPY CANADA DAY!
2018 Canadian Flag with coloured micro-sized letters that put O Canada into art!
The first recorded organized public recognition of the war dead occurred on May 1, 1865, in Charleston, South Carolina. On that day, Freedmen (freed southern slaves) celebrated the service of the 257 Union soldiers buried at the Washington Race Course (now Hampton Park). They labeled the gravesite “Martyrs of the Race Course.” African Americans continued that tradition and named the celebration Decoration Day.
Southern states began their own commemoration to honor their soldiers who died during the war. No specific date was used but occurred in late April through June. By 1880, there was a more organized Confederate Memorial Day. These celebrations honored specific soldiers to commemorate the Confederate “Lost Cause.” By 1913, a sense of nationalism saw a commemoration of all soldiers that have died in battle.
2018 World War I Centennial Commemorative Silver Medal – Air Service (Image courtesy of the U.S. Mint)
Memorial Day took on national significance following World War I when the nation began to recognize all those who gave the ultimate sacrifice during all conflicts. By the end of World War II, most of the celebrations were renamed to Memorial Day. Memorial Day did not become an official holiday until 1967 with the passage of the Uniform Holidays Act (Public Law 90-363, 5 U.S.C. § 6103(a)) in 1968. Under the law, Memorial Day was set to the last Monday in May, changing it from the traditional May 30th.
The modern Memorial Day is a holiday celebrating the lives of those sacrificed in defense of the United States and its ideals at home and abroad. Today, we honor the memories of those who paid the ultimate sacrifice, from the days of the revolution to the conflicts in around the world, so that I have the freedom to write this blog and you can read and share it amongst your friends.
Christian Jacobs, 5, of Hertford, N.C., dressed as a Marine, places a flag in front of his father’s gravestone on Memorial Day in Section 60 at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Virginia, on May 30, 2016. Christian’s father Marine Sgt. Christopher James Jacobs died in a training accident in 2011. (Image: Carolyn Kaster/AP via Mashable)
Chocolate coins in honor of the 150th anniversary of the historic Coin Press No. 1 are on sale at the Nevada State Museum’s store. (Courtesy of Jeanette McGregor via the Nevada Appeal)
There is nothing that says Mother’s Day more the chocolate.
Chocolate is one of the most complicated flavors, evident by the inability to produce artificial versions.
Scientists have discovered that The smell of chocolate increases theta brain waves, which triggers relaxation. And dark chocolate has been found to have health values including containing antioxidants, widens the arteries to increase the flow of blood and prevent the buildup of plaque, has anti-inflammatory powers, and when eaten daily can reduce the risk of heart disease by one-third.
Every second, Americans collectively eat one hundred pounds of chocolate. But Americans are only ninth when considering the per capita pounds of chocolate consumed by country. The top honor goes to the Swiss people who consume an average of 19.8 pounds of chocolate each. Americans only consume an average of 9.5 pounds.
Rare collectible coins can be worth far more than their face value – and the rarest 50p design regularly sells for 160 times what it’s worth. But which coins should you look out for in your change? Which? → Read more at which.co.uk
Recycling flows defy price rise because jewelry holdings 'already depleted'… GOLD COIN and small-bar investors in the West have begun selling metal while household sales of 'scrap' jewelry have fallen to 10-year lows according to new data. → Read more at bullionvault.com
While Joel Kimmel may not be attending the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle on May 19, the Ottawa-born illustrator’s connection to the soon-to-be royal couple will be forever etched … → Read more at ottawacitizen.com
The Friends of the Nevada State Museum, in tribute to the upcoming 150th anniversary of the Museum’s historic Coin Press No. 1, have “minted” chocolate coins for sale at → Read more at nevadaappeal.com
Archaeologists digging in an historic part of central Moscow have found all sorts of objects in recent months, but perhaps nothing as interesting as the oldest example of a pickpocket's coin to come to light in the city. → Read more at bbc.com
Super Bowl 52 Official 2-Tone Flip Coin (Courtesy of the Highland Mint)
In 1966, discussions between the upstart American Football League and the National Football League led to the development of a championship game. The idea came from Kansas City Chief’s owner Lamar Hunt to have a single game to crown the championship during the five years it would take to merge the leagues.
The game was called the AFL-NFL World Championship Game and was first played in the Los Angeles Coliseum on January 15, 1967, between the NFL’s Green Bay Packers and the AFL’s Kansas City Chiefs. The game drew 61,846 in a stadium that held over 90,000 people. Halftime entertainment featured Al Hirt and the marching bands from the University of Arizona and Grambling State.
Green Bay, coached by the legendary Vince Lombardi, won the game 35-10. Bart Starr was the game’s MVP. Kansas City was not a bad team, coached by Hank Stram and led by quarterback Len Dawson. But the Packers were just that much better.
The game was broadcast by both NBC and CBS who charged $42,000 per 30-second commercial. It is estimated that the game was seen by more than 51 million people.
The first game to be officially branded as the Super Bowl was Super Bowl III played at the Orange Bowl in Miami. It was also the game that introduced us to significant pre-game hype when New York Jets Quarterback Joe Namath guaranteed a Jets victory over the heavily favored Baltimore Colts. The Colts were led by Coach Don Shula and the legendary Quarterback Johnny Unitas. The Jets’ 16-7 victory has been said to have accelerated the merger between the leagues.
Super Bowl LII will be held in Minneapolis, Minnesota, a nice city but not exactly a “hot” spot in February. U.S. Bank Stadium will be sold out to its capacity of 73,000 and should be seen by a national television audience of over 111 million people. It is estimated that another 30 million, including 4 million from Canada, will be watching around the world.
Advertisers are paying $7.7 million per 30-seconds for their commercials. Adjusting for inflation ($42,000 in 1967 would be the same as $314,711 today), it is costing advertisers almost 24½-times more than the first AFL-NFL World Championship Game. Although the production of the commercials has been a big deal, the gauntlet was thrown down in 1979 when Coca-Cola aired “Hey kid, Catch” starring Pittsburgh Steelers Defensive Tackle “Mean” Joe Greene. If you have not seen it or want to see it again, you can watch it at https://youtu.be/xffOCZYX6F8.
Super Bowl LII marks the 25th year that the Highland Mint of Melbourne, Florida will be striking the medal used in the coin toss. Prior to the making of the official coin, each game either used a coin of their choosing or the host city created their own medal. Of course, the NFL could not pass up a marketing opportunity and has decided to control the process.
After the game, the coin used for the coin toss is sent to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio. If there is an overtime game, as there was for Super Bowl LI, the same coin is used as the pre-game coin toss.
The official coin “is carefully struck of fine silver plate and selectively flash plated with 24kt gold,” according to the Highland Mint. Each 1½-inch coin is individually numbered with a mintage limit of 10,000. Super Bowl fans and the fans of the winning team can order one directly from the Highland Mint.
The Wilmington Symphony will premiere ‘The Dance of the Coin’ Feb. 3 at the CFCC Wilson Center. Handling coins is still a regular occurrence for many people. Writing this story served as a reminder that touching these artfully cast pieces of metal is as close as most of us ever come to touching history. → Read more at starnewsonline.com
More than $50 million worth of gold bars, coins and dust that’s been described as the greatest lost treasure in U.S. history is about to make its public debut in California after sitting at the bottom of the ocean for more than 150 years. → Read more at foxnews.com
The Royal Mint is set to honour four generations of the monarchy with a new coin depicting the Queen and three future kings. A new £5 coin will feature Her Majesty and her son the Prince of Wales, grandson the Duke of Cambridge and great-grandson Prince George. The historic coin will show their initials E, C, W and G, and three crowns. → Read more at standard.co.uk
Metal detectorists Paul Adams, 58, and Andy Sampson, 54, began dancing around a field in Suffolk, crying out in joy when they stumbled upon a handful of ancient coins potentially worth £250,000. → Read more at dailymail.co.uk
The US Mint recently began accepting mutilated coins from scrap recyclers after a 2 year hiatus while it investigated an alleged massive Chinese coin fraud operation. → Read more at motherboard.vice.com
While many countries are winding down use of physical money in favour of card and app payments, Germans are stubbornly clinging to the clink of coins and rustle of banknotes. → Read more at gulf-times.com
There may be a coin, token, or medal that will help celebrate any holiday or occasion.
Someone looking for a collecting idea decided to find out if there was a coin for every holiday or commemoration. After searching online for the last few months, this person found over 150 coins and medals to cover more celebrations than Hallmark has cards for.
I had asked for a sample of some of the finds. There were a few commemorative coins and medals from the United States and foreign made. Many are known, some were a bit obscure.
Happy Groundhog Day Commerative Coin
Then I decided to ask about specific holidays. With Groundhog Day approaching, I asked what was in the collection for that celebration. I was expecting a Canadian coin with a badger or Canadian marmot on the reverse. Instead, I was sent a link to the “Happy Groundhog Day Commemorative Coin.”
The Happy Groundhog Day Commemorative Coin is technically a medal. It is a 1½-inch gold-colored medal available from Punxsutawney Phil’s Official Souvenir Shop in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. For the low price of 94-cents each (and likely with added shipping costs), you can also have a medal to add to your collection to celebrate Groundhog Day.
When they pulled the poor rodent out of his warm home, probably from a comfortable sleep, and paraded him around, Phil did see his shadow, thus winter will last for six more weeks. Historically, Phil and his ancestors have only been 39-percent accurate.
This is the space where I try to comment on something in the news that I found interesting. Like my update on December 3, 2017, my mind is elsewhere.
If you are a college football fan or happened to watch the Rose Bowl last Monday, my undergraduate alma mater, the Georgia Bulldogs played a thrilling game to beat the Oklahoma Sooners 54-48 in double overtime for the right to play in the National Championship game tomorrow. The last time Georgia played in the Rose Bowl, they were crowned the 1942 National Champions.
Seventy-five years later and 37 years after Georgia’s last National Championship (in the 1981 sUGAr Bowl where I was a member of the Redcoat Marching Band), it will be a battle of Southeastern Conference Titans: Alabama v. Georgia. Also known as the Teacher v. the Student since Georgia Head Coach Kirby Smart was once the Defensive Coordinator and Assistant Head Coach under Alabama’s Nick Saban. Saban’s former assistants are 0-11 against their former boss. At some point, that streak has to end. Why not on Monday?!
Of course, my mood has been affected by Monday’s game. Even while working an antique’s show this weekend, which is why I am not in Tampa for the Florida United Numismatists (FUN) Show, it has been a wild week—and sales have been very good. But I am waiting for the game. Monday night at 8:00 PM on ESPN.
For the coin toss (I have to include some sort of numismatic content), the referees used a silver coin with the logos of the schools on both sides. The coin looked like it was silver dollar size (at least 38mm) and in an AirTite or similar holder. There was no calling “heads or tails.” The logo that showed face up won the toss. For the pre-game and overtime coin tosses, Oklahoma won the toss. But that does not matter. I want one of those coins!
Video of 2018 Rose Bowl Coin Toss
Both the Rose Bowl site and the Highland Mint has what they call “dueling helmets” coins (yes, I know they are really medals). I want one of those silver coins like that was used for the coin toss. I sent a note to the people who run the Rose Bowl to ask how I can purchase one.
If you want to know what kind of mood I will be in on Tuesday, it will correspond to the outcome of the game!
The story of Dr Frankenstein and his cursed monster is celebrated in a new set of coins. A £2 issue will mark the 200-year anniversary of the novel by Mary Shelley which launched the modern horror genre. → Read more at mirror.co.uk
Editor's Note: View Kitco News' full 2018 outlook coverage (Kitco News) – It was a tale of two markets for gold in 2017, as prices made their biggest gains since 2010, but U.S. Mint coin sales were the weakest in a decade. → Read more at kitco.com
Norway minted its own coins during much of the Middle Ages. But the coins didn’t always impress outsiders or even the Norwegians themselves. NTNU Associate Professor Jon Anders Risvaag specializes in medieval coins. → Read more at sciencenordic.com
Challenge coins mean different things to different troops. Senior enlisted and officers tend to place them on a desk to gloat to peers and the more junior troops slam them on the bar to see who’s buying the next round. → Read more at wearethemighty.com
The Royal Mint has unveiled the designs of four new commemorative coins to be launched this year. Based on the sales values of previous issues, these could be attractive investments. Three of the coins commemorate the centenaries of major events and organisations that have helped shape Britain, including a £2 coin that marks the 100th anniversary of the First World War Armistice — the agreement that ended fighting between the Allies and Germany. → Read more at telegraph.co.uk
As we begin a new year, we should look forward to better times for our hobby, our nation, and our world. I wish you and yours a Happy and Healthy 2018 and hope that you find the key coin of your dreams!