The Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee met in Washington, D.C., on November 19th, 2010, to discuss the reverse designs for the 2011 American Platinum Eagle collector coin. In 2009, The U.S. Mint began a six-year series to highlight the core concepts of American Democracy by featuring the six principles of the Preamble of the United States Constitution. The phrase “To Insure Domestic Tranquility” was the inspiration for the designs for 2011. Kaarina Budow of the U.S. Mint provided a description of the candidate reverse designs before the committee, as well as a short review of the program.
Michael Ross started the comment section, who stated that, from a historical perspective, the seventh design was the “most interesting.” The snake on that design, was, to Mr. Ross, an exact representation of domestic unrest, matching the unrest of the days under the Articles of Confederation. He also liked design 2, as a tranquil scene. Rick Meier was second. He found that he was drawn to design 1 and its tranquil scene. He found it also showed action and beauty, and in his opinion, was “a wonderful design.” Design 8 was his second choice.
Donald Scarinci was next, and quickly indicated that design 1 was “the only acceptable design.” He pointed out individual features of the other designs, saying how busy some of them are. He indicated he would only support design 1, but only with a single point out of the possible 3. Chairman Gary Marks said he was drawn to design 2, but also thought design 1 was “a fine design.” Turning back to design 2, Mr. Marks found it to be a simple design, and “has the allegory that we’ve [the CCAC] been asking for.” He also commented that in a proof coin, the second design would be “an absolutely beautiful coin.”
Roger Burdette followed the chairman, as well as followed in his fellow committee members’ in expressing preferences for designs 1 and 2. He did, however, have some concern over the difference in direction between the flow of the hair and the flow of the drapery, as well as the potential confusion from the public upon seeing a dove and a snake on the same coin. Heidi Wastweet continued the wave of interest in the first two designs, but would have liked to see the inclusion of the field into the design as a domestic symbol. The other designs solicited comments such as “Olympic” for design 4, “too old-fashioned” for design 7, and cautioned against the upturned heads in designs 8 and 9.
Mike Olson had some of the strongest positive comments for design 1, comparing it to the St. Gaudens $20 double eagle. Mike Brown, calling into the meeting, indicated his support for design 1, “for most of the reasons cited.”
After the comments, the score sheets were distributed and the members voted. With a maximum of 24 points, the recommendation of the committee was design 1, which received 19 votes, with designs 2 and 7 receiving 11 votes and 6 votes, respectively. Designs 5, 6, and 8 received 1 vote each, and designs 3, 4, and 9 received none.