Duke Ellington becomes first African-American on U.S. coin

CNN: Jazz legend Duke Ellington is the first African-American to appear on an American coin, the U.S. Mint says in introducing the latest in its line of state-themed quarters.

The District of Columbia commemorative quarter showing Ellington playing the piano will be introduced by U.S. Mint Director Ed Moy at a news conference Tuesday at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History.

Ellington won the honor by a vote of D.C. residents, beating out abolitionist Frederick Douglass and astronomer Benjamin Banneker.

Also on the coin is the phrase “justice for all.” The mint rejected the first inscription choice of D.C. voters, which was “taxation without representation,” in protest of the District’s lack of voting representation in Congress.

FULL STORY HERE

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