Description

Feb 1, the United States Mint released two 2016 $1 Mark Twain Commemorative Silver Coins. They are available in proof and uncirculated collector qualities. This commemorative coin program is in recognition of Mark Twain’s literary and educational contributions.

Samuel Langhorne Clemens (November 30, 1835 – April 21, 1910), better known by his pen name Mark Twain, was an American author and humorist. He wrote The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (1876) and its sequel, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1885), the latter often called "The Great American Novel". Twain published 28 books, as well as many short stories, letters and sketches. He is remembered for addressing complex social situations that were facing Americans during his time. His books have been translated into more than 75 languages, and many are still in print today.

He maintained that his primary pen name came from his years working on Mississippi riverboats, where two fathoms, a depth indicating safe water for passage of boat, was measured on the sounding line. Twain is an archaic term for "two", as in "The veil of the temple was rent in twain." The riverboatman's cry was "mark twain" or, more fully, "by the mark twain", meaning "according to the mark [on the line], [the depth is] two [fathoms]", that is, "The water is 12 feet (3.7 m) deep and it is safe to pass."

The delay in the release of the Mark Twain silver dollars from the originally announced Jan. 14 date was about the Certificates of Authenticity. The correct description on the reverse of the Silver $1 Coin should read: “... Jim and Huck from Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.” Originally it had said “Adventures of Tom Sawyer.”

Obverse

The obverse features a portrait of Mark Twain holding a pipe with smoke forming a silhouette of Huck Finn and Jim on a raft in the background with the inscriptions “IN GOD WE TRUST,” “LIBERTY” and ”2016.”

Designer: Chris T. Costello (CTC).
Engraver: Michael Gaudioso (MG).
Philadelphia Mint (P).

LIBERTY
IN GOD WE TRUST
2016
P
CTC MG

Reverse

The reverse features an assortment of characters leaping to life from Mark Twain’s works: The knight and horse from "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court", the frog from “The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County” and Jim and Huck from "Adventures of Huckleberry Finn". The inscriptions are “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,” “$1” and “E PLURIBUS UNUM" ( Latin for "Out of many, one").

Designer: Patricia-Lucas Morris (PLM).
Engraver: Renata Gordon (RG).

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
$1
PLM RG
E PLURIBUS UNUM

Edge
Characteristics
Type Commemorative Issue (Non-circulating)
Material Silver
Fineness 0.900
Weight 26.73 g
Diameter 38.1 mm
Thickness -
Shape round
Alignment -
Mint
Philadelphia Mint (P)

Related coins

Mark Twain

Gold, 8.359 g, ⌀ 21.59 mm