One of two commemorative coins produced that year by the US Mint was the 2004 Thomas Alva Edison Silver Dollar. With the 125th anniversary of Edison's invention of the light bulb being celebrated on February 11, 2004, these coins were released to the public.
One of the most consequential and impactful businesspeople, inventors, and scientists to come out of the United States, Thomas Alva Edison came into this world on February 11, 1847. The phonograph, motion picture camera, and, of course, the first practical light bulb were among his most renowned innovations.
The Thomas Alva Edison Commemorative Coin Act, officially known as Public Law 105-331, granted congressional authorization for the minting of these silver dollars. The Mint was given the green light by the Act to mint proof and uncirculated versions of the coins, which would "be emblematic of the light bulb and the many inventions made by Thomas A. Edison throughout his prolific life."
Donna Weaver, a sculptor and engraver at the United States Mint, was responsible for designing the obverse of the Thomas Alva Edison Silver Dollar. The intent of this design was to depict the renowned inventor holding one of his light bulbs.
"THOMAS ALVA EDISON," "LIBERTY," "IN GOD WE TRUST," and "2004" are some of the inscriptions that can be seen across the entirety of Edison.
A representation of the light bulb that Edison invented in 1879 is depicted on the reverse side of the coin, with rays coming from the bulb.
In addition to the inscriptions "125th Anniversary of the Light Bulb, 1879, 2004, United States of America, One Dollar, and E Pluribus Unum," it was designed by John Mercanti, a sculptor and engraver who works for the United States Mint.
The Port Huron, Michigan, Museum of Arts and History, the Edison Birthplace Association, the National Park Service, the Edison Plaza Museum, the Edison Winter Home and Museum, the Edison Institute, the Edison Memorial Tower, and the Hall of Electrical History received equal shares of strike surcharges.