During Black History Month, the Senate passes bipartisan Portman and Rosen legislation to honor Harriet Tubman with commemorative coins
This year also marks Harriet Tubman’s 200th birthday
February 18, 2022
WASHINGTON, DC – Last night the US Senate passed bipartisan legislation introduced by US Senators Rob Portman (R-OH) and Jacky Rosen (D-NV). Harriet Tubman Bicentennial Commemorative Coin Act, to honor the life and legacy of Harriet Tubman with the creation of commemorative coins that bear her image and symbolize her legacy. The coins mark Tubman’s 200th birthday in March 2022 and will be paid for by sale to the public at no cost to taxpayers.
“Harriet Tubman selflessly and courageously dedicated her life to helping others escape the bondage of slavery.” said Senator Portman. “She was a trailblazer who paved the way for civil rights and women’s rights activists to follow in her stead. With the passage of this bipartisan bill through the Senate, I am pleased that we are one step closer to honoring Tubman’s life and legacy.”
“Harriet Tubman’s incredible life story is an inspiration to all of us,” said Senator Rosen. “Having escaped slavery herself, Tubman risked her life and safety to help more than 70 enslaved African Americans escape to freedom. From her work as a spy and nurse for the Union Army during the Civil War to her leadership in the women’s suffrage movement, Harriet Tubman is an American hero, and I’m thrilled that this bipartisan legislation recognizing her legacy is one step closer to her becoming law. ”
“Harriet Tubman is one of the most revered figures in American history and in the ongoing struggle for inclusive freedom. The passage of this law in the United States Senate rightly enshrines her in the pantheon of our nation’s heroes.” said Woodrow Keown, Jr., President and COO of National Underground Railroad Freedom Center. “This is an essential step in ensuring our national heroes reflect the true diversity of those who have contributed so significantly to our nation’s democracy. Having the likeness of Ms. Tubman embossed on a commemorative coin will encourage people to learn more about this extraordinary leader who had such a profound impact on American history and culture. Modern-day abolitionists continue to be inspired by the principles of courage, cooperation, and perseverance she exemplified to improve our country.”
“We support bipartisan efforts to recognize the legacy of Harriet Tubman, aka Black Moses.” called Tom Roberts, President of the Ohio Conference NAACP. “Personally, I’d like to thank Senators Portman and Senators Rosen for taking the lead and sponsoring the Harriet Tubman Bicentennial Commemorative Coin Act.”
“I am pleased to join others who are pausing today to celebrate the Harriet Tubman Bicentennial Coin Act. Known as Black Moses, Ms. Tubman led 70 slaves to freedom.” said Bishop Timothy J. Clarke, First Church of God, Columbus, Ohio. “Their courage and dedication changed the course of history. Your story is history! Thank you to Senators Portman and Rosen, who were instrumental in making this honor possible.”
“We are delighted at the bipartisan support of our beloved patriot Harriet Tubman in her bicentennial year.” said dr Dennis V. Proctor, Chairman of the Harriet Tubman Home, Inc. and Presiding Bishop of New York State for the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, Harriet Tubman’s chosen church. “Most appropriate are the three commemorative coins from the US Mint. We are the stewards of Tubman’s legacy. Our goal remains to find meaningful ways to share Harriet with freedom-loving people around the world. The coins are a symbol of Tubman’s quest for liberty, justice and destiny – the ideals of democracy!”
“In this bicentennial year of Harriet Tubman, it is tremendous that there is bicameral and bipartisan support to honor her life and legacy with the commemorative coins.” said Karen Hill, President and CEO of Harriet Tubman Home, Inc. “Tubman’s heroism, patriotism, and activism are all part of what America was. We thank Rep. Katko and Rep. Meeks in the House of Representatives, and Sen. Rosen, Sen. Portman and Sen. Schumer for their work in bringing about the Harriet Tubman Bicentennial Commemorative Coin Act. We look forward to working with the Department of Treasury, corporate and non-profit partners to ensure these coins saturate America and become a beloved family keepsake. Thanks again to everyone who makes this a reality.”
the Harriet Tubman Bicentennial Commemorative Coin Act (p.697) directs the Treasury Department to mint and issue—at no cost to American taxpayers and at an additional cost to buyers—$5 gold coins, $1 silver coins, and plated half-dollar coins bearing the Tubmans’ image and symbol of theirs bequests, all of which would be legal tender. The proceeds from the sale of such coins to the public would cover all costs associated with their minting. Grants received from the Treasury Department would be paid equally to the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center in Cincinnati, Ohio and the Harriet Tubman Home in Auburn, New York to fulfill their mission of telling the stories of abolitionists and inspiring the public by sharing Harriet Tubman’s story, core values and furthering her tremendous legacy.