The National Park Service Centennial $5 gold coin honors the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service. Signed into law by President Woodrow Wilson on August 25, 1916, the National Park Service is a federal organization that oversees the operation and maintenance of many public parks throughout the United States. When An Act To Establish A National Park Service, also known as the Organic Act, was passed in 1916, the National Park Service oversaw 35 parks and landmarks, including Yellowstone National Park. Yellowstone is one of the nation’s oldest, having been declared a “public park or pleasuring ground for the benefit and enjoyment of the people” by Congress in 1872 and placed “under exclusive control of the Secretary of the Interior.”
Over the course of one hundred years, the National Park Service has grown to incorporate more than 400 sites, include more than 20,000 employees and volunteers, and encompasses some 84 million acres across all 50 states. The Park Service hosts millions of visitors each year and provides an array of educational programs for individuals of all ages. The significance of the National Park Service and its contributions to enriching the public warranted a series of commemorative coins celebrating the centennial of this beloved organization.
Congress passed The 100th Anniversary of the National Park Service Act (Public Law 113-291) in the spring of 2014 and President Barack Obama signed it into law on December 19 of that year. The bill authorizes the production of a commemorative half dollar, silver dollar, and $5 gold coin. Specifically, the bill permits a total mintage of 100,000 $5 gold coins across all finishes.
The proof National Park Service Centennial half eagle is also offered (along with the proof clad half dollar and silver dollar) in a three-coin proof set.
The National Park Service Centennial 2016 Gold $5 Half Eagle is anchored by a leftward-facing jugate bust of President Theodore Roosevelt and conservationist John Muir. Roosevelt was a staunch supporter of environmental protection and set aside more than 230 million acres of public lands during his presidency. Muir was a naturalist who was one of the earliest major advocates for the preservation of wilderness in the United States.
On the coin, both Roosevelt and Muir are seen looking upon Yosemite National Park’s iconic Half Dome formation, which rises majestically in the background. “LIBERTY” fills an area of field along the rim and above the jugate portrait and Half Dome design elements. The date, “2016,” sits under the busts, with the motto “IN GOD WE TRUST” inscribed along the rim under the date.
Don Everhart designed and sculpted both the obverse and the reverse. His initials are found to the right of Roosevelt’s collar on the obverse.
The reverse of the $5 gold coin features the National Park Service logo hanging from a signpost with a sweeping panorama of a mountainside prairie in the background. “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” is inscribed along the right side of the reverse near the rim, while “E PLURIBUS UNUM” sprawls along the rim just to the left of the design. A numerical declaration of the denomination, “$5,” sits to the center right of the National Park Service logo, just above the “W” mintmark symbolizing the West Point Mint.
Coin engraver Don Everhart’s are found behind the NPS sign, on the bottom of the central are.
Designer(s): Don Everhart joined the United States Mint sculpting and engraving department in 2004, after a long and successful career as a sculptor and designer of medals. View Designer’s Profile
|Year Of Issue:
|W (West Point)
|.900 Gold; .100 Alloy
|8.359 grams nominal
|21.59 mm (±0.08 mm)
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