2009 First Spouse Gold Coins

First Spouse Coins were first introduced by the US Mint in 2007 and are struck in honor of the women who were married to the former Presidents of the United States. 2009 First Spouse Gold Coins feature Anna Harrison, Letitia Tyler, Julia Tyler, Sarah Polk and Margaret Taylor.

2009 First Spouse Gold Coins (Obverse, Proof Versions) - Click to Enlarge

2009 First Spouse Gold Coins (Obverse, Proof Versions) - Click to Enlarge

Minted in 24 karat gold, each $10 denominated issue contains 1/2 ounce of the precious metal in collector proof and uncirculated conditions.

Every spouse coin is issued on a schedule coinciding with the releases of the Presidential dollars. As a President is featured on his commemorative dollar coin, his wife (or wives) will be featured on their own coin.

The obverse (heads side) of each gold coin contains a portrait of the former first lady while the reverse (tails side) of the commemoratives showcase an important aspect of her life.

2009 First Spouse Gold Coins (Reverse, Proof Versions) - Click to Enlarge

2009 First Spouse Gold Coins (Reverse, Proof Versions) - Click to Enlarge

If a President was not married during his term, an image of Lady Liberty that was used on a circulating coin of his era is used on the obverse, while the reverse design is based on themes relevant to that President. That is not the case for any of the 2009 releases.

At an East Room White House ceremony hosted by First Lady Laura Bush in 2007, US Mint Director Ed Moy had this to say about the coins:

"This is the first time in American history that women are featured on a consecutive series of coins," said Moy. "And, it is the first time our First Ladies are gracing coins made of 24-karat gold."

In speaking of the history of those women who came before her, Laura Bush made these comments:

"America's first ladies have guided, comforted and sustained our nation in times of trial and triumph. At the same time, they've fulfilled their other very important role-and that is the wife of the President of the United States,"stated Mrs. Bush. "The East Room is the perfect place to honor these remarkable women, especially one of America's most beloved First Ladies: Dolley Madison."

Below is some additional information on the 2009 issues and the women they honor.

Anna Harrison First Spouse Gold Coin

Anna Harrison First Spouse Coin - Anna Harrison has not only the distinction of being the wife of a President (William Henry Harrison), but also the grandmother of another President (Benjamin Harrison).

She also is unique in the fact that while technically the First Lady, she never set foot in the White House, as her husband died one month into his term, before she could join him in Washington. D.C.

The portrait on the obverse of her coin was designed by Donna Weaver and sculpted by Joseph Menna. The reverse, designed by Thomas Cleveland and sculpted by Charles Vickers, shows Anna's passion for teaching, with her students around her.

Letitia Tyler First Spouse Gold Coin

Letitia Tyler Gold Coin - Letitia Tyler would be the first wife of a President to die while he was in office. Already an invalid due to a stroke before entering the White House, she only attended one official function before her death.

Letitia's obverse portrait was designed and sculpted by Phebe Hemphill. The reverse depicts Mrs. Tyler and two of her children playing outside at their plantation. It was designed by Susan Gamble and sculpted by Norm Nemeth.

Julia Tyler First Spouse Gold Coin

Julia Tyler Gold Coin - Julia married John Tyler while he was still President after the death of his first wife. Their age difference caused something of a scandal, but together they worked to overcome it through the few months John still had in his term.

The portrait and the scene on the reverse of Julia's coin were both designed by Joel Iskowitz and sculpted by Don Everhart. The reverse shows John and Julia dancing at a White House ball. Julia introduced the Polka at a similar event, and it became a national craze.

Sarah Polk First Spouse Gold Coin

Sarah Polk Gold Coin - Phebe Hemphill gets all the credit as both designer and sculptor for the obverse and the reverse of the Sarah Polk coin. The reverse highlights the duty of private secretary that Sarah performed for her husband.

She is the only first lady to ever serve in that position. She was known to pre-read newspaper articles and correspondence for James, and highlight the areas that she felt needed his attention.

Margaret Taylor First Spouse Gold Coin Design

Margaret Taylor Gold - Margaret actually prayed for her husband's defeat in his presidential bid, but still joined him in the White House upon his election. She was semi-invalid, and remained on the second floor leaving the social duties to her daughter, Mary Elizabeth Taylor.

When Zachary died in office, her health also took a drastic turn for the worse and she passed away two years later. Margaret's earlier years were spent following her soldier husband from post to post, and while doing this, she also helped to care for the wounded after battle, which is what is depicted on the reverse of her coin.

That image was designed by Mary Beth Zeitz and sculpted by Jim Licaretz. The obverse portrait was designed by Phebe Hemphill and sculpted by Charles Vickers.

The First Spouse coins issued in 2007 honored Martha Washington, Abigail Adams, Thomas Jefferson's Liberty and Dolley Madison. Those issued in 2008 were Elizabeth Monroe, Louisa Adams, Jackson's Liberty and Van Buren's Liberty.

Prices for First Spouse Coins may change weekly based on how well gold is doing. The US Mint uses a seven day average of the London Gold Fix. If the average moves up or down by $50, the Mint will adjust the first lady coins up or down by $25. Usually price changes occur around noon ET on Wednesdays.

2009 First Spouse Gold Coin Specifications

Mintmark: W
Finish/Condition: Uncirculated, Proof
Composition: .9999 Fine Gold
Weight: .50 Troy oz (15.554 g)
Diameter: 26.49 mm (1.041 inches)
Thickness: 1.88 mm (0.074 inches)
Edge: reeded
Date of Issue: 2009
Obverse Designer/Sculptor: See Above
Reverse Designer/Sculptor: See Above

2009 First Spouse Coin Resources