OTTAWA, Jan. 13, 2014 /CNW/ - January 13, 2014 - To join Canadians in honouring Canada's veterans of "The Great War" and the compatriots and loved ones who supported them behind the battle lines and on the home front, the Royal Canadian Mint is commemorating the 100th anniversary of the declaration of the First World War on its 2014 Proof Silver Dollar, which was unveiled today at the Canadian War Museum.. "As Canadians remember those who bravely defended our country and the universal values of freedom, democracy and the rule of law during the First World War, our Government is pleased that the Mint is honouring their memory on the 2014 Proof Silver Dollar," said the Honourable Jim Flaherty, Minister of Finance and Minister responsible for the Royal Canadian Mint. "This moving tribute to the Canadians who voluntarily defended our values in battle, and to the compatriots and families who supported them behind the front lines, is an excellent way to remind Canadians that their contribution and sacrifice allowed us to reach new heights as a nation."
"The Mint has often commemorated the sacrifices of Canadians at times of war and we are proud to honour those, both military and civilian, who fought and laboured for peace and justice as Canada remembers the 100th anniversary of the declaration of the First World War," said Ian E. Bennett, President and CEO of the Royal Canadian Mint. "By dedicating our very popular Proof Silver Dollar to Canada's decision to join the Allied cause in the "war to end all wars", the Mint is remembering a true turning point in Canadian history while thanking thousands of Canadian men and women for their historic efforts and sacrifices."
The Mint's Proof Silver Dollar coin can be ordered directly from the Mint as of tomorrow, January 14th at 1-800-267-1871 in Canada, 1-800-268-6468 in the US, or on the Internet at www.mint.ca. These coins will also be available at the Royal Canadian Mint's boutiques in Ottawa, Winnipeg and Vancouver, as well as through the Mint's global network of dealers and distributors, including participating Canada Post outlets.
Please see attached backgrounder for further information.
About the Royal Canadian Mint
The Royal Canadian Mint is the Crown Corporation responsible for the minting and distribution of Canada's circulation coins. An ISO 9001-2008 certified company, the Mint is recognized as one of the largest and most versatile mints in the world, offering a wide range of specialized, high quality coinage products and related services on an international scale. For more information on the Mint, its products and services, visit www.mint.ca.
THE 2014 PROOF SILVER DOLLAR:
100TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE DECLARATION OF THE FIRST WORLD WAR
On August 19, 1914, The Right Honourable Sir Robert Borden, Prime Minister of Canada, famously declared that "we stand should to shoulder with Britain" as Canada formally joined the Allied declaration of war against Germany at the outbreak of the First World War.
This historic four-year conflict saw Canadian nationhood reach new heights after Canada sent its first-ever independent, national military contingent to fight alongside French and British forces, thus abandoning the old custom of assigning Canadian soldiers to British infantry units. The volunteers who joined the First Canadian Expeditionary Force (CEF) in 1914 left their communities and loved ones to board trains headed for Valcartier, Quebec. This famous Canadian Armed Forces base first opened in 1914 as the training camp for CEF soldiers bound for Britain and France to join the Allied fight against the German-led enemy.
By 1916, Canada was able to field an army corps of four divisions at the front. Eventually commanded in 1917 by a Canadian, Lieutenant-General Sir Arthur Currie, our troops won praise and admiration for their achievements in battles such as the Somme, Vimy Ridge, Passchendaele, and many more fought in the decisive last hundred days of the war.
Through the vision of Nova Scotia artist Bonnie Ross, the Royal Canadian Mint has captured one of countless emotional farewells replayed on train platforms across Canada as our volunteers left to assemble in Valcartier for war in Europe. This scene on the reverse of the 2014 Proof Silver Dollar is vividly engraved on a 99.99% pure silver dollar, accentuated by frosted elements. The obverse features the effigy of Her Majesty queen Elizabeth II, designed by Canadian artist Susanna Blunt. Limited to a mintage of 40,000, the 2014 Proof Silver Dollar retails for $59.95 CDN.
As 2014 marks the centennial of the First World War and the 75th anniversary of the Second World War, the Royal Canadian Mint is developing an all-encompassing coin program to commemorate both historical events. With so many stories and events touching Canadians on so many levels, the program will span 2014 to 2020, including both circulation and collector coins. The Mint will deploy its skill, innovation and craftsmanship to pay a worthy tribute to all those who steadfastly defended Canada and its values, with themes such as 'The Canadian Home Front', 'Canada on the Battlefront' and 'Peace and Legacy'. The Mint's commemorations for the First and Second World Wars will support those of the Government of Canada.
SOURCE Royal Canadian Mint