April 20, 2016, Washington D.C. – Treasury Secretary Jacob J. Lew announced about one of the most shocking changes of this century – the replacement of traditional $1, $5, $10 and $20 banknotes with the newly designed American currency demonstrating new historical figures known as fighters for African American rights for the past few centuries in the United States. Personal Money Service dwelled more into details below.
Anti-Slavery Activist VS Former President
The first announcement of the US currency huge makeover proposed the replacement of the $20 bill starring the seventh national’s President Andrew Jackson with the anti-slavery crusader Harriet Tubman, who’ll be the first African-American woman ever placed on the face of US paper currency. In the nearest future Tubman, which used to be one of the antislavery movement leaders of the 19th century, is expected to oust “white” Jackson widely known for his persecution of Native Americans and owning slaves to the back of the bill, right along with the image of the White House.
Jacob Lew says: “It’s an important story of American democracy about how one person who grew up in slavery, never had the benefit of learning how to read or write, could change the course of history.”
Born in the early part of the19th century on a Maryland plantation, Harriet Tubman personally experienced a slavery escape and later moved to the South to become an antislavery activist and helping hundreds of other slaves find freedom. Furthermore, she worked as a Union spy during the Civil War.
Americans Choose Tubman
The last year treasury’s announcement about printing a woman on the face of the American banknote made a women’s group called Women on 20s conduct a survey to find out which female historical figure is worth to be there. The survey has collected approximately 600,000 votes for over 10 weeks. As a result, Tubman placed number 1. Along with Harriet, there have been several more women that were frequently voted for. Those include the civil rights hero Rosa Parks, former first lady Eleanor Roosevelt and Wilma Mankiller – the first female chief of the Cherokee Nation.
By the way, female figures haven’t been printed on U.S. bills since the times, when Martha Washington’s image was on the $1 silver certificate (1891-1896) and Pocahontas was featured in a group picture on the $20 banknote (1865-1869).
Besides, there have been golden dollars with Native American Sacagawea known for assisting the Lewis and Clark Expedition and suffragist Susan B. Anthony, whose image used to face an unpopular silver $1 coin. Alabama quarter still has a deaf-blind author, political activist and lecturer Helen Keller on its back.
News about Jackson’s replacement with the female anti-slavery activist Tubman reached to the point when a popular Twitter hashtag #HarrietTubman got more than 100,000 mentions all over the social media.
Hillary Clinton, first American female candidate running for the presidency, talks about Tubman as a woman, a leader, and a freedom fighter. She supported her claims by mentioning Tubman on Twitter saying that she couldn’t think of a better choice than her.
Redesigned Bills to Be Released in 2020
As for other changes, Americans will soon see changes of the $5 bill, where the illustration of Lincoln Memorial on the back would get replaced with the images of Martin Luther King Jr, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Marian Anderson.
Despite recent talks about Hamilton and Lincoln replacement on the front of the $10 and $5 accordingly, officials assure that both will remain on their places as before. Nevertheless, a few more images of suffrage leaders will be added on the back for both, including Lucretia Mott, Sojourner Truth, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Alice Paul, and Susan B. Anthony.
The first redesigned bills will be launched in 2020, which is the 100th anniversary of women receiving their right to vote. As stated by the government, the connection between those two dates is the reason for putting suffragettes on the back of the 5$ and 10$ bills.