Naval history is always a solid subject for a coin, going hand in hand with numismatics long association with the rulers of empires and nations, and the large fleets many had under their control. It also has its fair share of tragedies and glories, all rich fodder for the modern coin world in particular. Mint XXI’s ‘Grand Shiprecks in History’ is definitely a showcase for the tragedies, as the title will no doubt make clear.
The third coin was released a while ago and will be shipping next month, so I’m indulging myself with a look at this latest addition to a series I really like, and a subject with an extraordinary history. The first coin was the Whydah Gally, a pirate ship, and the second was the Titanic, a vessel that needs no introduction, but we’re in national navy territory here with Vasa.
How bad was the Vasa sinking? Imagine the US Navy’s latest supercarrier, the USS Gerald R. Ford, had just launched from Newport News shipyard in Virginia, sailed out a mile and then sank in full view of a large crowd, including enemy observers, some of which the US was at war with. A hugely expensive and hugely embarrassing tragedy. That actually happened with Vasa.
The coin is really nice, with a gorgeous reproduction of a painting of Vasa under sail in a large window, surrounded by high-relief details of the ships many terrific decorative carvings. A neat touch, and one that has adorned every release in this series, are some period coins. It all hangs together superbly, enhanced by the antique finish. This is a two-ounce silver coin and comes boxed with a Certificate of Authenticity. Available to order now.