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Dolley Madison Commemorative Dollar

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1999 Dolley Madison Commemorative Silver Dollar


Sales Period The coin was available for purchase from the U.S. Mint from January 1, 1999, through December 31, 1999.

Commemoration The coin was authorized to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the death of First Lady Dolley Madison.

Dolley Madison's Story Dolley Madison defined the role of our nation's First Ladies, setting the tone for presidential spouses since. Her husband, James Madison, was the father of the Constitution and the primary author of the Bill of Rights. Mrs. Madison's contributions to the country were significant as well.

Known for her grace and wit, Dolley Madison served 16 years as hostess of the White House, first during the presidency of the widowed Thomas Jefferson, and later during the administration of her own husband. During that time, she presided over the first inaugural ball in 1809 and is believed to have started the tradition of the White House annual Easter egg hunt.

When the British advanced upon Washington in 1814, Dolley Madison showed the courage for which she would also be remembered. As the British set fire to large parts of the nation's capital, Dolley Madison rescued Gilbert Stuart's famous portrait of George Washington and a number of important government papers.

The Dolley Madison Commemorative Silver Dollar is the first coin to honor a First Lady, and is the first coin designed by Tiffany & Co.® (whose hallmark, T&Co, appears as an artist mark on both sides of the coin). The design, which Tiffany & Co. specifically created for this commemorative coin, is based on a portrait of Dolley Madison by Gilbert Stuart -- the same artist whose portrait of George Washington she rescued from the British. The obverse portrays Dolley Madison bordered by a bouquet of Cape Jasmines, her favorite flower, in front of Montpelier's classically-inspired ice house. The reverse shows Montpelier surrounded by willow trees and foliage.

Coin Specifications The coin is 1.500 inches in diameter and weighs 26.73 grams.

Coin Composition 90% silver, 10% alloy

Design Theme on Obverse Dolley Madison surrounded by a bouquet of Cape Jasmines, her favorite flower, in front of Montpelier' classically-inspired ice house.

Design Theme on Reverse The reverse shows the landmark Montpelier, with its columns and lush willow trees and foliage.

U.S. Mint Sculptor-Engravers T. James Ferrell, obverse; Thomas D. Rogers, reverse

Place Minted Philadelphia, PA ("P" Mint Mark)

Authorization Date The coin was authorized on October 20, 1996, by Public Law 104-329.

Year(s) on Coins 1999

Authorized Mintage Limits 500,000

Pre-Issue Sales Price: January 1, 1999 - February 8, 1999 Silver Dollar proof: $33 Silver Dollar uncirculated: $30 Two-Coin Set (Proof and Uncirculated): $59.95

Regular Sales Price: February 9, 1999 - December 31, 1999 Silver Dollar proof: $37 Silver Dollar uncirculated: $32 Two-Coin Set (Proof and Uncirculated): $64.95

Surcharge Information Intended Recipient Organization: The National Trust for Historic Preservation. Purpose of the Surcharge: A portion of the proceeds from each coin sold is authorized to be paid for the purpose of maintaining Montpelier and its 2,700 acres. Surcharge Amount per Coin: $10 Total Surcharges Generated: $3,135,070

Total Coins Sold 313,507 The U.S. Mint's Total Coins Sold reflect the final figure after reconciliation of all orders. (Note: The number of coins sold may vary slightly from figures in other numismatic publications.)

Press release: January 11, 1999


- Coin Is First to Feature 'First Lady' and Tiffany Commemorative Design -

Washington, D.C-- Director of the Mint Philip N. Diehl today announced that the Silver Dollar celebrating the life and achievements, and commemorating the 150th anniversary of the death of Dolley Madison, is now available from the Mint.

"We are proud to collaborate with TIFFANY & CO.®, and to assist the National Trust for Historic Preservation to recognize this great American woman renowned for her intelligence, fortitude and grace," said Diehl.

The Mint in October began accepting advance orders for the coin in its annual catalog, the 1998 Holiday Collection. A portion of the proceeds from sales of the coin are authorized to be used by the National Trust for Historic Preservation to maintain Montpelier, James and Dolley Madison's Virginia home.

As first lady during her husband's two presidential terms, and serving as hostess during the first Jefferson administration, Dolley Madison brought competing factions together in a social setting, using her natural diplomatic talents to ease political tensions and pave the way for civil debate in the young Republic. She is credited with defining the role of first lady by establishing a style of ceremonial etiquette that did not yet exist. In addition, the first lady of the Nation's fourth President, James Madison, was instrumental in organizing the rescue of important government papers, including Gilbert Stuart's portrait of George Washington, as the British burned the capital in 1814.

The obverse side of the coin carries a portrait of the young Dolley Madison, with her image framed by her favorite Cape Jasmine flowers and the Ice House Temple, which still stands on the grounds of her home at Montpelier today. The reverse side of the coin depicts a pastoral perspective of the mansion at Montpelier.

Contact: Press inquiries: Michael White (202) 354-7222 Customer Service information: (800) USA MINT (872-6468)

Coin Information Provided Courtesy The United States Mint.

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