The 50th Anniversary Moon Landing Coins

The 50th Anniversary Moon Landing Coins


Behind The Apollo 11 50th anniversary coin

During the 50's and 60's, the United States and the Soviet Union rushed to see who could dominate the space race. One of the main objectives was to reach the moon. In September of 1959, the Soviet Union struck first by landing the Luna 2 on the moon. This was the very first man made object to actually reach the moon’s surface. Ten years later, the United States struck back with the Apollo 11 mission. From 1696 to 1972, the United States has carried out six manned landings. Of course, the one that took place on July 20, 1969 is the most important.    Obviously, the Apollo 11 moon landing was a great moment in American history. It is only right for the event to be commemorated. That will happen with the launch of a new commemorative coin, which will be explored in much greater depth below. 

The Apollo Commemorative Coins

Four Coins And A Curve The United States Mint releases commemorative coins from time to time, but there is something particularity unique about this one. In total, there are going to be four coins released in the Moon Landing collection. There will be a $5 gold coin, a half dollar clad coin, a $1 silver proof coin and a standard size $1 silver coin. Suffice to say, there is a little something for everyone. Anyone who collects coins will want to buy the collection while the supplies last. The US Mint recently released the designs of the new commemorative coins for everyone to see.  This time around, the Mint will do something it has never done before. All of the coins in the program will be curved. This is yet another reason to make the investment. In the years to come, this unique oddity could very well help the coin’s value soar to new heights.

The Obverse Design Anyone who knows a thing or two about commemorative coins will know about Public Law 114-282. This law makes it clear that the mint must choose the design of the coin from entries in a juried competition. This year, the winning design comes from Gary Cooper, who resides in Belfast, Maine. The coin is set to feature the inscriptions of “Apollo”, “Gemini”, and “Mercury”.  They’ll be separated by the Moon’s phases. The coin will also feature a footprint on the lunar surface. The design symbolizes the effort the country poured into the space program during its attempt to land on the moon for the very first time. The design of the coin was sculpted by Joseph Menna, who serves as the Mint sculptor-engraver.

The Reverse The back of the coin features a unique design by Phebe Hemphill, who is also a Mint Sculptor-Engraver. The design features a good representation of Buzz Aldrin on the Moon. The design is based on the iconic photograph snapped on July 20, 1696. As everyone should remember, the photograph features only the visors and a small portion of Aldrin’s helmet. In the reflection on the helmet, you’ll be able to see fellow astronaut Neil Armstrong. This image has become iconic over the years and it is definitely something that people want to remember.  The coin will ensure that the image lives on for eternity. Ms. Hemphill was also responsible for sculpting the design.

The US Mint Apollo Coin Surcharges

The Price The law requires the United States Mint to collect surcharges from all coin sales. Therefore, you’ll need to pay if you intend to obtain the new Apollo 11 50th Anniversary Commemorative Coin. Below, you’ll find a breakdown of the surcharges so you can know what to expect.


  • Gold coin - $35 each
  • $1 silver coin - $10 each
  • Half-dollar coin - $5 each
  • Five ounce silver proof coin - $50 each

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More on NASA Coins

Some of the money will be given to various foundations. For example, a quarter will be given to the Astronauts Memorial Fund. Another quarter will go to the Astronaut Scholarship Foundation. Finally, half of the proceeds will be given to the Smithsonian Institution’s National Air and Space Museums “Destination Moon” exhibit. Joel Iskowitz's Classic Coin Of course, who can forget the classic New Frontier Bronze Medal 2012 design by Joel Iskowitz, a well known coin designer who has a few historical designs under his belt.  This particular coin's obverse included portraits of Apollo 11 astronauts Neil A. Armstrong, Michael Collins, and Edwin E. “Buzz” Aldrin Jr. facing left, and Friendship 7 astronaut John Herschel Glenn Jr. The reverse side included a stunning design of the Lunar Excursion Module orbiting the moon and the Friendship 7 mission capsule orbiting the Earth. You can see the design here. Stay Tuned For More The good news is that it is only a matter of time before you’ll be able to buy these commemorative coins. The Mint is expected to announce the final pricing and release date sometime in January of 2019. During the same month, the Mint will begin accepting sales.  All of the images for this article are property of NASA.


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