Frederick Douglass honored on new quarter

By Monique Jones

The Birmingham Times

U.S. Mint
U.S. Mint

The U.S. Mint celebrated the release of a new quarter dedicated to abolitionist Frederick Douglass.

The quarter was officially launched Tuesday during a ceremony at the Frederick Douglass National Historic Site in Washington D.C. The event included special recognition of the quarter’s designer, Thomas Hipschen, as well as recitations by 2016 Frederick Douglass Oratorical Contest winners and a performance by the Washington Revels Jubilee Voices.

The quarter’s reverse design features Douglass at his writing desk, with his Washington, D.C. home depicted in the background.

Douglass was born a slave in 1818, but grew up to become a leading force in the country’s abolitionist movement. Douglass published three autobiographies, including “Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass,” which became a bestseller and is considered one of the most influential works of literature supporting the abolitionist movement.

The coin is the latest design was chosen by the U.S. Secretary of the Treasury as part of the America the Beautiful Quarters Program, which honors the country’s national parks. Other quarters in the series feature the Effigy Mounds National Monument, Yellowstone National Park, Mount Rushmore National Memorial, and many other national monuments and parks throughout the U.S.

NBC 4 and The U.S. Mint contributed to this post.