The George Washington Carver - Booker T. Washington half dollars of 1951 through 1954 came about during the 82nd Congress via an amendment to the legislation that authorized the BTW half dollars of 1946 through 1951. I discussed the WC-BTW coins here: http://goccf.com/t/118247
Little known, however, is the fact that two attempts were made prior to the 82nd Congress to secure a commemorative half dollar honoring Carver alone.
In 1947, during the 80th Congress, Frances Payne Bolton (R-OH) introduced a bill "to commemorate the life and accomplishments of Doctor George Washington Carver, a Great American." The bill called for up to 5 million silver half dollars to be struck for the benefit of the George Washington Carver Foundation of the Tuskegee Institute in Alabama. The Carver Foundation was created to support agricultural research at Tuskegee. Carver launched the Foundation and provided early funding for it - he gave his life savings (~$60,000) to support the Foundation shortly before he died in 1943.Read More: Commems Collection
The bill did not gain much traction, however. It was referred to the House Committee on Banking and Currency and never reported out. Bolton introduced an identical bill in 1950 during the 81st Congress, but it met with the same fate as its predecessor.
The idea of honoring Carver with a coin resurfaced in March 1951, during the 82nd Congress, when companion bills were introduced by Brent Spence (D-KY) in the House and Burnet Maybank (D-SC) in the Senate. The bills proposed to amend the BTW Act of 1946 to allow the striking of a new design that simultaneously honored Washington and Carver.
The bills also added a second beneficiary - the Carver National Monument Foundation in Missouri; the sole beneficiary specified in the original BTW Act was the Booker T. Washington Birthplace Memorial in Virginia. The George Washington Carver National Monument at Carver's Missouri birthplace was created by Congress in 1943. Profits from the sale of the coins did not necessarily go to supporting the two birthplace memorials, however. The bill specified the funds were to be used by each organization to "oppose the spread of communism among Negroes" in a manner they each deemed appropriate.
The joint Booker T. Washington - George Washington Carver bill gained quick support; the House bill moved forward and was approved in September 1951.
It is interesting to note that the Carver Foundation at the Tuskegee Institute, the sponsor of the two earlier coin proposals, was not part of the new coin bill.
So, though the legacy of George Washington Carver was not individually celebrated on a US coin, he did get his due alongside Booker T. Washington, another prominent African-American who achieved greatness in his lifetime.
I've included my 1951-S example for show-and-tell. The coin is a brilliant example with the typical luster I seek for my coins. It is a coin that I could upgrade relatively inexpensively, but my thoughts regarding its design aesthetics positions its upgrade rather low on my priority list.