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Commems Collection: 1936 Providence, RI - Half Dollar Proposal

 
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 Posted 01/13/2022  09:02 am Show Profile   Bookmark this topic Add commems to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
Just following up on my post from yesterday regarding the Hudson, NY / Providence, RI combination commemorative coin bill. (1935 Hudson, NY Sesquicentennial - Congressional Path.) I wanted to complete the "story" so to speak...

As noted previously, a bill proposing the striking of "50-cent pieces in commemoration of the three-hundredth anniversary of the founding of the city of Providence, Rhode Island" was introduced in the Senate in January, 1935; Senator Jesse Houghton Metcalf (R-RI) introduced it.

The bill did not specify a date to be used on the coins, or an expiration date for their striking; it only specified "That, as soon as practicable...there shall be coined at the Mints of the United States..." The bill requested 100,000 coins. When it was combined with the Hudson, NY coin proposal bill. the mintage request was reduced to 50,000 coins.

The bill lacked the name of a sponsor. It did not include any specification of who was to pay for or receive the half dollars once struck, but did include language that prevented the Federal Government from incurring any costs for the coins. So, some outside entity was clearly intended to be involved - but went unnamed.

IMO, the bill, as presented, was "unfinished." This may have been a driver behind the lack of attention it generated within the Senate Committee on Banking and Currency - the Committee to which it had been referred. When it was introduced as an amendment to the Hudson, NY bill, it included a sponsor name - the Providence Tercentenary Committee - in addition to the mintage request reduction noted above.

The amended bill did not impose a time limit on the coins, simply stating "The coins authorized herein shall be issued in such numbers, and at such times as they may be requested by the...Pilgrim Tercentenary Committee." Theoretically, the coins could have been struck in multiple years at each Mint facility. Considering the 50,000 coin maximum, the yearly mintage amounts would have been small, but I can envision them splitting the limit to include at least 1937-dated coins (even though the State's official celebrations ended in October 1936) as a marketing gimmick.


1936 Providence, RI Tercentenary Half Dollar



If you're interested in learning more about the Providence, Ri Half Dollar, check out:

- 1936 Rhode Island Tercentenary
- 1936 Rhode Island Tercentenary - Revisited
- 1936 Rhode Island Tercentenary - Horace Grant
- 1936 Rhode Island Tercentenary - School of Design


For a variety of commemorative-themed posts about coins and medals, check out: Commems Collection.



Collecting history one coin or medal at a time! (c) commems. All rights reserved.
Edited by commems
01/13/2022 09:42 am
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 Posted 01/13/2022  09:30 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Coinfrog to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Thanks, always a good read. One of my half dozen least favorite designs in the series.
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 Posted 01/13/2022  10:06 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add jbuck to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Very interesting. The ambiguity here tells me this is another one that would have been easier proposed as a medal.
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 Posted 01/14/2022  05:35 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add nickelsearcher to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Many thanks commems for sharing your research knowledge.

A theme that is emerging from several of your recent threads is the fact that collectors (of the issue era and today) managed to avoid several additional multiple year/mint issues that were proposed and debated, but never approved by congress.

It would be a fascinating topic to know how many of such coins were avoided due to legislative decisions to deny requests for additional years and/or branch mint issues.

The baseline would be coins approved for production that eventually formed a member of the 50 coin classic silver type set. With the additional mintage we now have a 144 coin complete classic commemorative set.

What would that number have been if all of the additional requests were granted? 200 coins, 250 coins?

Now that would be a challenging research project for our beloved CCF Master Historian of Commemorative Coins commems!
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