The American twenty-cent piece was a coin struck from 1875 to 1878, but
only for collectors in the final two years. In 1874 Nevada's newly
elected senator, John P. Jones, began promoting his bill for a twenty-
cent piece to alleviate the shortage of small change in the Far West.
The bill passed Congress the following year, and Mint Director Henry
Linderman ordered pattern coins struck. Although the new coin's edge was
smooth rather than reeded, as with other silver coins, the new piece was
close to the size of, and immediately confused with, the quarter. Adding
to the bewilderment, the obverses (front faces) of the coins were almost
identical. After the first year, in which over a million were minted,
there was little demand, and the denomination was abolished in 1878. At
least a third of the total mintage was later melted by the government.
Numismatist Mark Benvenuto called the twenty-cent piece "a chapter of
U.S. coinage history that closed almost before it began".
Read more: <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twenty-cent_piece_(United_States_coin)>
Today's selected anniversaries:
German composer Richard Wagner's romantic opera Lohengrin (2015
production pictured), containing the Bridal Chorus, was first performed
under the direction of Franz Liszt in Weimar, present-day Germany.
American Civil War: The Union Army successfully extended its
blockage strategy by capturing two Confederate forts on North Carolina's
A military coup d'etat against the government of Dimitrios
Rallis began in the Goudi neighbourhood of Athens, Greece.
African American teenager Emmett Till was murdered near Money,
Mississippi, for flirting with a white woman, energizing the nascent
American Civil Rights Movement.
Swedish police used gas bombs to end a seven-day hostage
situation in Stockholm; during the incident the hostages had bonded with
their captors, leading to the term "Stockholm syndrome".
Wiktionary's word of the day:
Release from slavery or other legally sanctioned servitude; the giving
of freedom; the act of manumitting.
Wikiquote quote of the day:
⨀ My name is Harrison Bergeron. I am a fugitive, and a public
threat. I am an abomination of the able. I am an exception to the
accepted. I am the greatest man you have never known. And for the last
six years, I have been held prisoner by the state — sentenced, without
trial, to torture without end. They… had hoped to destroy in me any
trace of the extraordinary … but the extraordinary, it seems, was
simply out of their reach. So now I stand before you today, beaten,
hobbled, and sickened … but, sadly, not broken. And I say to you, that
if it is greatness we must destroy, then let us drag our enemy out of
the darkness, where it has been hiding. Let us shine a light so, at
last, all the world can see!