Although the world has moved from coins and bills to digital currency, legal tender was once a symbol of a nation. Through coins, nations could showcase their culture and history, all while combining artistry and practicality.
The unsung heroes behind coin design aren’t widely known. But their contributions to the world of currency and art make them intriguing historical figures. Here are some of the most well-known coin designers throughout history.
1. Augustus Saint-Gaudens
Arguably the most talented coin designer in American history, Augustus Saint-Gaudens was a noted sculptor hired by President Theodore Roosevelt to overhaul the design of gold coins in the USA.
Lauded for his sculptures depicting Civil War heroes and icons, Saint-Gaudens turned his skills to numismatics and created two of the most beautiful coins ever minted. Produced from 1907 to 1933, he designed the $20 American Double Eagle coin, as well as the $10 Indian Head Gold Eagle.
Today, both are prized for their artistry as much as their value, placing Saint-Gaudens in the pantheon of great coin designers.
When you want to value, sell, buy or trade your St. Gaudens coins, give us a call. London Coin Galleries of Newport Beach has been helping the general public and avid collectors for multiple decades. Our customers refer us as their choice coin dealer in Orange County.
2. John Mercanti
Starting as an engraver and later serving as the 12th Chief Engraver of the U.S. Mint from 2006 to 2010, Mercanti is one of the newer additions to great coin designers, but every bit as influential. He even took home the honor of being named one of Coin World’s Most Influential People in Numismatics in 2020.
During his short tenure a the mint, Mercanti designed several beautiful coins, including:
- State quarters for West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Iowa, Arkansas, and North Carolina
- 1984 Olympics $10 gold coin
- 1991 Korean War Memorial silver dollar
- 1989 Congress Bicentennial gold $5 coin
- 2005 John Marshall commemorative $5 coin
He was so popular and praised during his stint as Chief Engraver, he was also commissioned to make Congressional Medals of Honor, securing his status as a master sculptor, engraver, and coin/medal designer.
3. Joaquim Jimenez
Born and raised in Spain, Joaquim Jimenez isn’t all that well-known in the United States, but his coins have worldwide appeal. Over the course of his career, Jimenez has designed coins for Spain, Andorra, and Panama.
What separates his coins from other designers is the commitment to historical and cultural motifs of the country, as well as intricate details rarely found in high-circulation coins.
To no one’s surprise, Jimenez was awarded the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award in Coin Design in February 2019 at the Coin of the Year Awards in Berlin.
Find the Right Coin for Your Collection
The designer of a coin doesn’t necessarily make it more or less valuable. But if you’ve fallen in love with a particular designer, finding the right coin for your collection is essential. To combine your appreciation with intrinsic value, turn to a reputable coin shop.
Unlike pawn shops, gold shops, or individual collectors, a coin shop with experienced individuals ensures that you always get a fair value for your coins when selling or a fair price if you’re buying.
At London Coin Galleries of Newport Beach, we place a big emphasis on numismatic value, therefore we offer you an unsurpassed experience in coin collecting. If you’re looking for that hard-to-find piece from your favorite coin designer, we might have just what you’re looking for.
Give us a call to book an appointment and visit our coin gallery in Orange County CA.