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Updated: 11:24 a.m. Friday, Jan. 13, 2017 | Posted: 9:37 a.m. Friday, Jan. 13, 2017

US Mint reveals first woman of color on Lady Liberty coin

Liberty coin
U.S. Mint via AP
This undated handout image provided by the U.S. Mint shows the design for the 2017 American Liberty 225th Anniversary Gold Coin. The coin is worth $100. 


Lady Liberty coin photo
A 1933  gold coin is displayed. The Lady Liberty coin has evolved and features a unique design for 2017. (Photo by Sotheby's/Getty Images) 

By Brianna Chambers

Cox Media Group National Content Desk

For the first time in history, a woman of color will appear on the $100 Lady Liberty coin. 

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The U.S. Mint and Treasury unveiled the new design on Thursday.

The front of the coin shows a black woman wearing a crown of stars, and the reverse side depicts an eagle in flight.

">January 12, 2017

This year is the 225th anniversary of the release of the Lady Liberty coin. The Coinage Act, passed in 1792, requires the coins feature an "impression emblematic of liberty" in words or images, always with an inscription of the word "liberty" and a representation of an eagle on the reverse side of the coin. 

The new coin is the first depiction of a black woman on the collector's coin. Before this year, Lady Liberty had always been depicted as a white woman.

The US Mint announced plans to release a series of coins that will represent Asian-American, Hispanic-American and Indian-American cultures in the near future in an effort to "reflect the cultural and ethnic diversity of the United States."

"We like to say at the Mint that our coins are metallic the footprints of our nation's history and symbolizes what America values and what America honors," said Elisa Basnight, U.S. Mint chief of staff. "As we as a nation continue to evolve, so does liberty's representation. We live in a nation that affords us the opportunity to dream big and try to accomplish the seemingly impossible."

The 24-karat gold coin is set to be released in April.