What It Takes To Change The Face Of American Currency

April 13, 2015 in Daily Bulletin

Over the past few weeks a campaign to replace the portrait of former US President Andrew Jackson on an American $20 bill with that of a woman has been picking up speed. Jaime Fuller looked at some of the complications involved:

  • In theory the Treasury Secretary could unilaterally decide to change the portrait on the banknote.
  • The only real requirement is that the person being memorialized be dead.
  • The last time the Treasury made a change was in 1929 when Andrew Jackson replaced Grover Cleveland.
  • Not that there haven’t been prior attempts – the most frequent one is to have Ronald Reagan replace Alexander Hamilton on the $10.
  • The $10 bill has always looked a promising candidate for change since the current occupant of the portrait was never President.
  • Not all modern campaigns to change currency have failed. An effort to make American currency suitable for the blind with tactile features was successful.
  • The mission to get a woman on currency has targeted the $20 bill, as the current face belonged to Andrew Jackson, known for having a controversial history with Native Americans.
  • The initiative will be fought tooth and nail by the National Automatic Merchandising Association – a lobby for vending machine owners who would have to redesign their systems.

Read more here.

Source: New York Magazine