38 mm (1-1/2”), 32 grams
HISTORY: Republic of Liberia is a country located on the west coast of Africa, declaring its independence on June 26, 1847. It was recognized by the United States on February 5, 1862, during the American Civil War. The United States then relocated more than 15,000 freed and born-free blacks to Liberia, where they took up residence among the existing population. Liberia never enjoyed a peaceful history. By 1989, they fell into their First Civil War, lasting until 1997. Inconclusive agreements pitted them, once again, into their Second Civil War from 1999 to 2003. Over 250,000 people died during those tumultuous years. On June 17, 2003, a peace accord was signed, leading to relative stability.
OBVERSE: “REPUBLIC OF LIBERIA,” and “10 DOLLARS” frame the Liberian coat of arms, which shows a 19th-century ship arriving in Liberia with freed slaves from America, a plow and shovel representing hard work, a rising sun for the birth of a nation, a palm tree for food and prosperity, and a white dove with a scroll exalting the breath of peace.
REVERSE: Reproduction of Leonardo da Vinci’s sketch of a naked man hanging from a parachute, one of many of da Vinci’s inventions, is featured. Inscription at top reads, “MILESTONES OF AVIATION–PARACHUTE.” Leonardo da Vinci’s signature (in Italian, of course) is shown backwards, which was his eccentric style. The year “1485” is when he scribbled down his unique invention. At the bottom of the coin is “2003,” the year of the Liberian peace accords.