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Coin Type – National Park Service 100th Anniversary – 2016

Coin Type - 2016 National Park Service 100th Anniversary commemorative coin.

The 100th Anniversary of the National Park Service was celebrated in 2016. The National Park Service manages and controls all the nation’s federal parks, lands, and monuments. The United States Congress authorized a 3-coin set of commemorative coins to be issued for the occasion, through the enactment of Public Law 113-291. The service was established in 1916 by the order of President Woodrow Wilson. The United States Mint was to strike a Clad Half Dollar, a Silver Dollar, and a Five Dollar Gold coin.  

The clad half dollar would be designed to depict the diversity of the various areas managed by the National Park Service.  The obverse of this clad half dollar was designed by Barbara Fox. The obverse of the coin is divided into two separate scenes by a banner on which “NATIONAL PARK SERVICE” is inscribed. The top portion depicts a hiker on a cliff looking across a vast open lake to mountains in the distance. The bottom portion is a bit larger, and it depicts a young child looking through leaves at a frog. It has the notations of the dates “1916 2016,” the motto “IN GOD WE TRUST,” and the word “LIBERTY.” 

The reverse of the clad half dollar depicts the upside-down arrowhead logo of the National Park Service. The logo has all the elements of the NPS – a Giant Sequoia tree represents the flora and fauna of the forests, the American Bison is symbolic of all the wildlife, and the mountains and lake represent the natural resources that the NPS maintains.  Above the logo is the motto “E PLURIBUS UNUM.” The upper periphery has “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,” while the lower periphery has the denomination “HALF DOLLAR,” with “STEWARDSHIP,” on one side of the denomination, and “RECREATION,” on the other side. The reverse was designed by Michael Gaudioso.  

(A 2016-D National Park Service, 100th Anniversary Clad Half Dollar, Uncirculated, Obverse [left], Reverse [right].)  

The Uncirculated coins were struck at the Denver Mint and bear a “D” mintmark while the Proof Versions were struck at the San Francisco Mint and bear an “S” mintmark. The Congress authorized a maximum of 750,000 coins across both versions.  

(A 2016-S National Park Service, 100th Anniversary Clad Half Dollar, Proof, Obverse [left], Reverse [right].)  

The coins were offered individually and within a three-coin proof set. Uncirculated coin sales totaled 21,335 coins and 54,962 of the Proof coins were sold.  

The National Park Service Commemorative Silver Dollar was also part of these authorized coins. The US Mint’s Joe Menna designed the obverse of the coin. It depicts the two most iconic symbols of Yellowstone National Park – the geyser “Old Faithful” erupting and an American Bison. Above the geyser on the upper periphery is the word “LIBERTY,” while on the lower periphery is the reason for this coin’s issuance – “NATIONAL PARK SERVICE CENTENNIAL.” To the right of the geyser are the dates on two lines “1916 2016,” and to the left is the motto “IN GOD WE TRUST.” 

The reverse of the coin was designed by Chris Costello. It depicts a ‘Latina Folklorico’ (Latin Folklore) dancer, holding a ribbon which is inscribed with the words “HERITAGE * CULTURE * PRIDE.” The National Park Service logo is on the dancer’s costume. The upper periphery has the mottoes in two lines “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,” and “E PLURIBUS UNUM.” The denomination is to the right and is expressed as “$1.” 

(A 2016-P National Park Service 100th Anniversary Silver Dollar, Uncirculated, Obverse [right], Reverse [left].) 

Both the Uncirculated versions and the Proof versions were struck at the Philadelphia Mint, and both bear a “P” mintmark. The maximum authorized mintage was 500,000 coins across both types. The Uncirculated version sold 21,003 coins and the Proof version sold 77,367 coins.  

(A 2016-P National Park Service 100th Anniversary Silver Dollar, Proof, Obverse [right], Reverse [left].) 

The final coin issued to celebrate the centennial of the National Park Service was a Five Dollar Gold coin. Both the obverse and reverse of this important commemorative coin were designed by Don Everhard.  

The obverse design portrays portraits of two of the most prominent and important people in the history of the National Park Service – President Teddy Roosevelt and Naturalist John Muir. Roosevelt was a rugged outdoorsman and was friends with Muir. Muir promoted the idea of a national park system across the continent. He devoted much of his adult life to preserving forests. It was Muir who convinced then-President Roosevelt to declare the Yosemite Valley as part of the Yosemite National Park. Roosevelt took it further by designating numerous national parks, national monuments, and national forests. Together they gave the National Park Service a vast amount of land to protect and preserve.  

The obverse of this commemorative gold coin depicts the profile of both historic men, facing left. Behind them is Yosemite’s famous “Half Dome” peak. Above them is the word “LIBERTY.” Below the portraits is the date “2016,” and the motto “IN GOD WE TRUST.” 

The reverse of this commemorative gold coin depicts the National Park Service logo as a sign, hanging from a wooden post, as one would expect to see in any American National Park. The outer periphery displays “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,” as well as “E PLURIBUS UNUM.” To the right is the denomination which is expressed as “$5.” 

(A 2016-W National Park Service Five Dollar Gold Commemorative, Uncirculated, Obverse [left], Reverse {right].) 

The West Point Minting facility struck both the Uncirculated version as well as the Proof version of this gold commemorative. An authorized maximum mintage of 100,000 could be struck between both types. The Uncirculated version sold 5,201 coins while the Proof version sold 19,510 examples.  

(A 2016-W National Park Service Five Dollar Gold Commemorative, Proof, Obverse [left], Reverse {right].) 

Both the Uncirculated and Proof versions of this coin were sold individually as well as in a 3-coin Proof set, which include a Proof Clad Half Dollar, a Proof Silver Dollar and this Proof Five Dollar Gold coin.   

Date Mintmark Denomination Type Mintage Value 
2016 Clad Half Dollar Uncirculated 21,335 $40 
2016 Clad Half Dollar Proof 54,962 $50 
2016 Silver Dollar Uncirculated 21,003 $60 
2016 Silver Dollar Proof 77,367 $80 
2016 Five Dollar Gold Uncirculated 5,201 $535 
2016 Five Dollar Gold Proof 19,510 $575 
2016  S-P-W 3-Coin Proof Set Proof Included $650 

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