100px|Liberty head nickle, observe side, showing Liberty wearing a
coronet and wreath
The Liberty Head nickel was an American five-cent piece. It was
struck for circulation from 1883 until 1912, with at least five pieces
being surreptitiously struck dated 1913. The original copper–nickel
five-cent piece, the Shield nickel, had longstanding production
problems, and in the early 1880s, the United States Mint was looking to
replace it. Mint Chief Engraver Charles Barber was instructed to
prepare designs for proposed one-, three-, and five-cent pieces, which
were to bear similar designs. Only the new five-cent piece was
approved, and went into production in 1883. For almost thirty years
large quantities of coin of this design were produced to meet
commercial demand, especially as coin-operated machines became
increasingly popular. Beginning in 1911, the Mint began work to replace
the Liberty head design, and a new design, which became known as the
Buffalo nickel, went into production in February 1913. Although no 1913
Liberty head nickels were officially struck, five are known to exist.
While it is uncertain how these pieces originated, they have come to be
among the most expensive coins in the world, with one selling in 2010
for $3,737,500. (more...)
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Today's selected anniversaries:
The London Lock Hospital, the first clinic specialising in the
treatment of venereal diseases, opened.
Intense rioting over labour conditions broke out in Glasgow, Scotland,
and was only quelled when the British government sent tanks to restore
Second World War: Allied forces retreated from British Malaya to
Singapore, ceding control of the country to Japan.
Aboard NASA's Mercury-Redstone 2, Ham the Chimp became the first
hominid launched into outer space.
Japanese amateur astronomer Yuji Hyakutake discovered Comet Hyakutake,
which was one of the closest cometary approaches of the previous 200
Wiktionary's word of the day:
Any group of people who invent or promote new techniques or concepts,
especially in the arts
Wikiquote quote of the day:
Attunement could occur through any of the great religions, but would be
tied exclusively to none of them. A person could be attuned to an
"integral spirituality" while still be a practicing Christian,
Buddhist, New-Age advocate, or Neopagan. This would be something added
to one's religion, not subtracted from it. The only thing it would
subtract (and there's no way around this) is the belief that one's own
path is the only true path to salvation.
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