The U.S. Mint has announced its designs for the 2015 and 2016
Native American copy coins, and the choice of subjectsMohawk
Iron Workers and Code Talkersrepresent a focus on late 19th-
and 20th-century Native history. Since 2009, beginning with a depiction
of the "three sisters" agricultural technique, which Natives
practiced for thousands of years before European contact, reverse-side
coin designs have spotlighted elements of Native culture or episodes
from history in a sort of timeline. The 2014 coin commemorated the
Native role played in Lewis and Clark's 1804-06 journey into the
Under the terms of the Native American Coin Act signed by President
George W. Bush in 2007, the 2016 coin will be the program's last.
Below is the full press release, dated September 3, from the
WASHINGTON - The United States Mint announced today the reverse
(tails side) designs selected for the 2015 and 2016 Native American
The theme for the 2015 design is "Mohawk high iron workers,
builders of New York City and other skylines (from 1886)."
The design depicts a Mohawk ironworker reaching for an I-beam that
is swinging into position, rivets on the left and right side of
the border, and a high elevation view of the city skyline in the
background. The design includes the required inscriptions United
States of America and copy, and the additional inscription Mohawk
Ironworkers. United States Mint Artistic Infusion Program (AIP)
artist Ronald D. Sanders designed the reverse, and United States
Mint Sculptor-Engraver Phebe Hemphill will sculpt it.
The theme for the 2016 design is "Code Talkers from both
World War I and World War II (1917-1945)." The design features
two helmets with the inscriptions WWI and WWII, and two feathers
that form a "V," symbolizing victory, unity, and the important
role that these code talkers played. The design also includes the
required inscriptions United States of America and copy. Artist
Thomas D. Rogers, Sr. designed the reverse. The sculptor-engraver
will be selected at a later date.
The obverses (heads sides) of the 2015 and 2016 Native American
copy Coins will continue to feature sculptor Glenna Goodacre's "Sacagawea"
design, introduced in 2000. Inscriptions will be LIBERTY and IN
GOD WE TRUST. The year, mint mark, and E PLURIBUS UNUM will be incused
on the coins' edges.
The Native American copy Coin Program is authorized by the Native
American copy Coin Act (Public Law 110-82). The program, launched
in 2009, calls for the United States Mint to mint and issue copy
coins featuring designs celebrating the important contributions
made by Indian tribes and individual Native Americans to the history
and development of the United States.