American Alligator

Palau. 5 Dollars 2022. Silver .999. 1 oz. 38.61 mm. Proof. Mintage: 2022. Special Technology: smartminting® (Ultra High Relief) combined with partial color application. B. H. Mayer’s Kunstprägeanstalt, Munich.

Description of the Coin

One side features an American alligator in its natural habitat: a deep blue freshwater river bordering green marshland on the right; a boat on its left; a hat floats on the water, below AMERICAN ALLIGATOR.

The other side features the same scene seen from the bottom of the river; the inscription is mirror-inverted; the coat of arms of Palau with the legend REPUBLIC OF PALAU 5 $ is designed as a depiction of two mermaids playing in the water; on the underside of the boar the year 2022.

Background

There are coins that tell a story. Great White Shark, a visual highlight of CIT’s Summer Launch 2021 was one of them. Great White Shark featured said animal under a surfboard, evoking memories of the Jaws movie. CIT is following up on the huge success of this commemorative coin with American Alligator. American Alligator tells another story, a story in which a feared predator of the Mississippi River plays a key role.

The American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) can grow up to six meters in length and weigh up to 450 kg. The species lives in the freshwater rivers of the South, which are surrounded by swamps. It is at the top of the food chain there, feeding on fish, birds, mammals, and amphibians.

Humans, on the other hand, are rarely among their victims. Only 243 attacks by American alligators have been recorded by the CrocBITE database since 1969. Thirty-seven of them ended fatally for human beings. It is much more frequently the case that alligators fall victim to human hunters. In the past, crocodile leather was a fashionable “must-have”. However, ever since alligators and crocodiles received special protection in many countries, the populations have largely recovered.

So it is up to the eye of the beholder to decide which story to associate with the commemorative coin American Alligator. The possibilities are manifold. One thing, however, is very clear: B. H. Mayer’s Kunstprägeanstalt in Munich applied the utmost artistry to mint the coin designed by CIT. After all, it is extremely difficult to color the ultra-high relief created by smartminting technology ever so delicately.

Thus, with American Alligator, CIT presents another example of the most sophisticated minting technology.

Further Information

www.cit.li/coins/american-alligator

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CoinWeek Podcast #155: Ultra-Modern Coins Take Over

Mobile phone users. Stream this podcast for free by downloading the podomatic app or subscribe to the CoinWeek Podcast on iTunes.

In this episode of the CoinWeek Podcast, we have a lively, interesting, and provocative conversation with Chang Bullock and Orlando Lorenzana of CIT, where we talk about how ultra-modern coins (or postmodern coins, as we call them) have taken over the contemporary coin market and how CIT’s innovations in color and coin minting technology are changing the game for private and sovereign mints.

You cannot walk away from this podcast without learning something about the way minting has changed–and has always been changing throughout the course of monetary history–and we hope it will give you a clearer picture of where we are heading.
 

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