1917-D STANDING LIBERTY 25C, TYPE 2 MS67
TYPE 2. TIED WITH 2 ANOTHERS FOR HIGHEST GRADED AT PCGS. CAC
NGC Graded Higher:
As a nation the United States avoided the European conflict that began in 1914 at all possible costs because it was against the current isolationist stance several people and the government maintained. It seemed that European victories had significantly plateaued by 1917 and there truly was no end in sight. After several threats, provocations, and a final militant attack on the United States’ liner Housatonic by Germany, we officially severed diplomatic ties with the German government on February 3, 1917. Little did the U.S. government know that prior to the militant attack Arthur Zimmerman, the German Minister, sent a “secret” proposal to the German Ambassador in Mexico intended for their government. Within the telegraph, the minister promised to return the Southwest United States back to Mexico if they declared war on their Northern Neighbors. To send this telegraph to Mexico, Zimmerman had to relay the message through another ambassador in Great Britain where it was able to be intercepted by the British, deciphered, and relayed to the United States government on February 24th. The Mexican government had denied the proposal which then helped the United States form a relationship with them. Fed up with Germany President Wilson requested a declaration of war on April 2nd and four days later congress issued a formal declaration of war on Germany. Now the United States was all in with the Allied Forces which included: France, Britain, and Russia and essentially strengthened their defenses ten-fold. By June 26th the U.S. sent their first support troops over to France most of whom had been conscripted in the second Federal Draft in American History. It was not until October 21st that American troops saw their first front-line action which inevitably led to the first casualties of this vicious, bloody war on November 2nd.
Beauty can still be born among terribly events; this beautifully designed coin had been in production since December 1916, making 1917 the first full year of production. Thanks to the Coinage Act of 1890 and after all gold coins were redesigned, mint officials decided silver coins finally had their due. Originally designed by renowned sculptor Hermon A. MacNeil, another apprentice of the infamous Augustus Saint-Gaudens; he had won the quarter in the same contest in which Weinman designed the Mercury and Walking Liberty for the dime and half dollar respectively. Hermon’s design ultimately won because it represented everything that the twentieth-century United States stood for. The standing liberty on the obverse of the coin characterized the Nation’s notion of battle readiness while her extended arm with olive branch in hand showed the underlying desire for peace. While the obverse featured, as required by federal law, an American Eagle- this one clearly in full flight. Nearly three months into circulation the coin had already been redesigned as a response of public worry. On Hermon’s original design, Lady Liberty donned a draped dress with one exposed breast which was quickly covered up on the type 2 design, featured on this 1917-D coin by chain mail. Regardless of the change, the design is still coveted as one of the most beautiful in coin history. The design was unfortunately short-lived due to the commemorative redesign to commemorate the two hundredth anniversary of George Washington’s birth.