Description and Analysis

Modern Commemoratives

Description & Analysis

The March of Dimes (originally known as the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis) was founded by President Franklin D. Roosevelt on January 3rd,1938. Roosevelt himself had been stricken with Polio as a child, leaving his legs paralyzed. The foundation established aid programs for the patients and also helped fund research for Polio vaccines. Less than 20 years later, Dr. Jonas Salk's vaccine was approved by the government on April 12,1955. In fact, Polio was eradicated completely from the United States in 1979.

The March of Dimes is now known for its work on preventing birth defects and premature birth as well as lowering infant mortality rates. In honor of all the good work that the foundation has done over the years, Congress authorized the mintage of up to 500,000 silver dollars. A $10 surcharge from every sale was paid to the foundation to help further its goals.

As of the end of last year, a total of just over 150,000 of the silver dollars were sold. About half of those were proof silver dollars included in a special set along with two special Roosevelt dimes. One was a proof struck at West Point, and the other a reverse proof struck in Philadelphia.