The 2019 Lowell America the Beautiful Silver Bullion Coin will mark the first strike of 2019 to appear as part of the US Mint’s America the Beautiful Silver Bullion Coin™ Program. It is also the forty-sixth coin to be issued in the series which launched in 2010 and runs through 2021 with a total of fifty-six new strikes.
On the reverse (tails side) of this coin, an image showing a portion of Lowell National Historical Park in Massachusetts will be featured. Design candidates for the coin should first appear in early 2018 to be reviewed by the governor of Massachusetts, the Interior Secretary, the Commission of Fine Arts and the Citizen’s Coinage Advisory Committee. All of these are asked to provide input on the Lowell design before the Mint Director forwards his recommendation to the Treasury Secretary who will make the final selection.
The obverse (heads side) will have a portrait of George Washington, the first President of the United States, on it. This is because these bullion coins are struck as a companion series to the America the Beautiful Quarter Dollars being released at approximately the same time and with the same imagery. Since Washington has been on the quarter since 1932 and remains there, his portrait is also found on these bullion coins.
The America’s Beautiful National Parks Quarter Dollar Coin Act of 2008, which authorized these coins, also calls for the coins weight and purity to be edge inscribed on each piece. As such we will find the weight of five ounces and .999 fine silver inscribed there. The coins diameter is required to be three inches making them the largest bullion coin produced by the Mint.
In order to adequately represent the beauty of the complete nation, only one site was allowed to be chosen from each state, the District of Columbia and the five territories of the United States (Guam, Puerto Rico, American Samoa, US Virgin Islands and the Northern Mariana Islands). This totals fifty-six sites, all of which must be of national interest meaning a location such as a national park, national monument, etc.
Only a network of authorized purchasers will be allowed to buy the bullion coins directly from the Mint. This is standard policy for all of the Mint’s bullion pieces. This network will then resell the pieces to coin dealers and individuals for a small premium above the spot price of the silver contained within them.
As the first coin to appear in 2019 as part of the America the Beautiful series, it will be followed by four more that year which honor American Memorial Park in the Northern Mariana Islands, War in the Pacific National Historical Park in Guam, San Antonio Missions National Historical Park in Texas and Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness in Idaho.
Lowell National Historical Park in Massachusetts
Lowell National Historical Park in Massachusetts was only established in 1978, but was designed to recall an era much earlier. Namely, the textile industry located in the area during the 19th century.
The town of East Chelmsford in Massachusetts was founded in the 1600’s, but it did not really rise to prominence until the 1820’s. It was during this time that industrial planners devised the idea to harness the power of the Merrimack River and use it to drive machinery used in textile creation.
To that end, a planned community was built along the banks which could both tap into the water power and provide open green spaces and large dormitories for the workers. The city was also renamed Lowell in honor of the founder’s deceased business partner.
Industry thrived in the community for more than a century before over-seas competition coupled with aging equipment forced the decline of business in Lowell. In 1978, legislation was created to establish Lowell National Historical Park with a majority of the work on the park being completed in the 1980’s.
Canals were rebuilt, mills were turned into museums and a waterfront walkway were all added to the park to make it more appealing to visitors.