Obverse. Photo © United States Mint
  • 1 Dollar 2023, United States of America (USA), Native American $1 Coin Program, Maria Tallchief and American Indians in Ballet
  • 1 Dollar 2023, United States of America (USA), Native American $1 Coin Program, Maria Tallchief and American Indians in Ballet
Description

The Sacagawea dollar (also known as the "golden dollar") is a United States dollar coin that has been minted every year since 2000. These coins have a copper core clad by manganese brass, giving them a distinctive golden color. From 2000 to 2008, the reverse featured an eagle design by Thomas D. Rogers. Since 2009, the reverse of the Sacagawea dollar has been changed yearly, with each design in the series depicting a different aspect of Native American cultures celebrating the important contributions made by Indian tribes and individual Native Americans to the history and development of the United States.

Obverse

Profile of Sacagawea with her infant son, Jean Baptiste Charbonneau being carried on her back.

Sacagawea (1788-1812) was a Lemhi Shoshone woman who helped the Lewis and Clark Expedition achieve each of its chartered mission objectives exploring the Louisiana Purchase. With the expedition, between 1804 and 1806, she traveled thousands of miles from North Dakota to the Pacific Ocean, established cultural contacts with Native American populations, and researched natural history.

The Lewis and Clark Expedition, also known as the Corps of Discovery Expedition, was the first American expedition to cross what is now the western portion of the United States, departing in May 1804, from near St. Louis making their way westward through the continental divide to the Pacific coast.

Engraver: Glenna Goodacre (GG)

LIBERTY
IN GOD
WE TRUST
GG

Reverse

Depicts Maria Tallchief in a balletic pose. A nod to the “Five Moons” is presented in the lunar motif, while the four ballerinas in the background are symbolic of both Tallchief’s American Indian ballerina contemporaries and the generations of dancers they inspired.

The Five Moons were five Native American ballerinas from the U.S. state of Oklahoma who achieved international recognition during the 20th century. The five women were Myra Yvonne Chouteau, Rosella Hightower, Moscelyne Larkin, and sisters Maria Tallchief and Marjorie Tallchief. With their great success in the dance industry, there are several artistic tributes across the Oklahoma area. The most well-known and significant tribute is the Five Moons (2007), a bronze sculpture installation in Tulsa, Oklahoma, that portrays the five ballerinas. Other tributes include the Flight of Spirit mural in the Oklahoma State Capital and dance festivals in their honor. These five women defied racial barriers and opened a door for women of color in the ballet industry.

Maria Tallchief (1925–2013) was the first American prima ballerina. She broke barriers as a Native American ballerina exhibiting strength and resilience both on and off the stage. Tallchief was born on January 24, 1925 in Fairfax, Oklahoma on the Osage reservation. She began dance lessons as a young girl and excelled at dance and playing piano.

At the age of 17, she moved to New York City to pursue her dreams of becoming a dancer. She was selected as an apprentice in the Ballet Russe, the premier Russian ballet company in the United States.

In 1942, when one of the lead ballerinas could not perform, Tallchief was called to stand in. Her reviews from top critics enabled her career to take off. She later became the first American to dance with the Paris Opera Ballet. She and her husband George Balanchine transformed American classical ballet.

Sculptor: Phebe Hemphill (PH)
Designer: Ben Sowards (BS)

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
BS PH
MARIA
TALLCHIEF
$1
AMERICAN INDIANS IN BALLET

Edge

Inscribed along the edge of the coin is the year of minting or issuance of the coin, the mint mark, and also the legend "E Pluribus Unum" (Latin for "Out of many, one").

Position A: edge lettering reads upside-down when Sacagawea's portrait (obverse) faces up.
Position B: edge lettering reads normally when Sacagawea's portrait (obverse) faces up.

2023 P ★★★ E PLURIBUS UNUM ★★★★★★★★★★

1 Dollar

Native American $1 Coin Program
Maria Tallchief and American Indians in Ballet

Subscribe series
KM#
Characteristics
Type Commemorative Issue (Circulating)
Material Manganese Brass
Weight 8.1 g
Diameter 26.5 mm
Thickness -
Shape round
Alignment Coin
Mints
Denver Mint (D)
Philadelphia Mint (P)
San Francisco Mint (S)

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