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Commems Collection: What If? 1934 Franklin Delano Roosevelt Coins And Notes

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 Posted 12/13/2022  09:27 am Show Profile   Bookmark this topic Add commems to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
I previously wrote about the 1946 FDR Dime here:

- 1946 Roosevelt Dime

President Roosevelt, however, was the subject of a coin and note proposal introduced in Congress 12 years before, in January 1934. Raymond Joseph Canon (D-WI) introduced a House Joint Resolution that called for "the issuance of notes and silver in honor of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt."

The HJ Resolution called for notes and coins of the $1.00 denomination "on which the portrait of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt shall he printed and stamped." It lacked details regarding whether the FDR coins/notes were to be ongoing replacements or one-year circulating commemorative pieces - the details were assigned to the Secretary of the Treasury.

Considering that Roosevelt had just recently been elected as President - he took office on March 4, 1933 (less than a year earlier) - and was the sitting US President, the use of his image on new US coins/notes would have been highly unusual. The law against having living persons appear on US currency (i.e., paper money/notes) was overridden by the Resolution's provisions.

The Resolution was referred to the House Committee on Coinage, Weights, and Measures, but was never heard from again - no Committee Hearing, no Committee Report. If it had been reported out of Committee without being amended, I imagine it would have faced vocal opposition on multiple fronts. For one, I don't believe attempting to replace George Washington, the Nation's First President, on the $1.00 bill would have been popular.

Though the 1932 elections had installed Democrat FDR as President, enabled the Democrats to gain control of the Senate and expand on their House majority, Canon's Resolution was not embraced by his party. As a result, it died for lack of action and the US continued on with its Peace Silver Dollar and with George Washington on the $1.00 note.

For more of my topics on commemorative coins and medals, including more What If? stories, see: Commems Collection.

Collecting history one coin or medal at a time! (c) commems. All rights reserved.
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 Posted 12/13/2022  11:04 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Coinfrog to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
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 Posted 12/13/2022  12:25 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add jbuck to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
This would have set a very bad precedent. I am glad sanity prevailed.
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 Posted 12/13/2022  12:30 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add nickelsearcher to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
@ commems - I enjoy you expanding your fabulous What If? series to coin proposals other than commemorative issues.

I as well am glad this particular proposal did not gain any traction.
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