The Perth Mint has launched the ANZAC Spirit 100th Anniversary of the First World War coin series to commemorate and honor this important period in Australia’s history. The centenary serves as an opportunity to reflect on how Australia has developed as a country, from a dominion of the British Empire, to an independent, courageous nation, proud of its own distinct persona.
The series will run from 2014 to 2018 and include the annual issue of 1 oz silver and 1/4 oz gold coins as well as an annual 1/2 oz silver three coin set. Periodically, the Perth Mint will also announce special limited edition feature coins. The series will be supported with interesting historical mementos and memorabilia.
The first 1 oz silver proof coin represents the British declaration of war on August 4, 1914. The reverse design features a group of soldiers marching beneath a representation of Britannia holding her trident and wearing a Corinthian helmet, symbolic of British liberties and democracy. At center is a quote from Australian Prime Minister Joseph Cook, who declared “… When the Empire is at war, so is Australia at war.” The year “1914” appears before the quote with a red poppy placed to the side.
Each coin is truck in 99.9% pure silver to proof quality with a weight of 31.135 grams and diameter of 40.60 mm. Edge lettering is included around the coin’s rim which contains the words “PRIDE • RESPECT • GRATITUDE •”. The maximum mintage is 7,500 pieces.
The 1/4 oz gold proof coin features a reverse design depicting a young boy watching soldiers marching along the Albany coastline, with a convoy of ships in King Georges Sound in the background. A red poppy is incorporated into the design. The words from a portion of a quote by Prime Minister Andrew Fisher appear above. During his election campaign, he said, “All, I am sure, will regret the critical position existing at the present time, and pray that a disastrous war may be averted. But should the worst happen after everything has been done that honour will permit, Australians will stand beside our own to help and defend her to our last man and our last shilling.”
Each coin is struck in 99.99% pure gold to proof quality with a weight of 7.777 grams and diameter of 20.60 mm. The maximum mintage is 1,000 pieces.
The 1/2 oz silver three coin set features designs with for the themes “First Action”, “Answering the Call”, and “Farewell to Family.” The reverse design of the first coin features an Australian soldier running through vegetation while under fire during the fighting for Bita Paka wireless station near Rabaul in German New Guinea. The second coin features three Australian men at the recruiting office signing up to enlist in the First World War. The third coin features an Australian soldier saying goodbye to his daughter on the wharf while he waits to board the boat to take him away to war. All three designs incorporate a red poppy and include colorized elements.
Each coin is struck in 99.9% pure silver to proof quality with a weight of 15.591 grams and diameter of 32.60 mm. Edge lettering is included around the coin’s rim which contains the words “PRIDE • RESPECT • GRATITUDE •”. The maximum mintage is 5,000 pieces.
The obverse design of each of the coins mentioned above features the Ian Rank-Broadley effigy of Queen Elizabeth II with the “2014” date, precious metal weight and purity, and legal tender denomination.
The Perth Mint is offering the limited number of 2,500 retail subscriptions for the five annual releases of the ANZAC Spirit three coin sets. Subscribers will receive a limited edition replica billy tin case and interesting historical replicas. The billy-tin and second gift of ephemera will be dispatched in the second year with the issuance of the 2015 edition of the three-coin set.
For more information on this and other new releases from the Perth Mint, please visit the recent releases section of their website.