Real Life Women on American Money

March being Women’s History Month, we thought it would be fun to take a look back at women on US money throughout the years.

  • The first, and as of right now the last, time a woman was honored on United States Paper Money was Martha Washington. In 1886, the $1 Silver Certificate featured her portrait, representing the first time a real, historical, woman was pictured alone on US Currency. The note, commonly referred to as the “Martha” is still highly sought after by collectors and is featured in the 100 Greatest American Currency Notes.
  • Before the “Martha” was released, the only other historical woman to appear on currency was Pocahontas, however she appeared within a group. In the 1860’s the “Baptism of Pocahontas” was featured on the back of $20 First Charter Period National Banknotes.
  • 1893 marked the first time North America honored a woman on a coin. After the persistence of Susan B. Anthony, who was calling for more representation of women on the commemorative coins minted for the Colombian Exposition, Queen Isabella of Spain was featured on what is now known as the “Isabella Quarter”.
  • Susan B. Anthony would soon hold the title for being the first woman honored on a coin that was released into circulation. The famous women’s rights activist was featured on a new $1 coin released in 1979. Before stopping production in 1999, the US Mint produced over 888,000,000 coins.
  • A year later brought the public the new golden-hued Sacagawea dollar coin. Known best for being an interpreter for the Lewis & Clark Expeditions, Sacagawea helped them reach each chartered mission objective while exploring the Louisiana Purchase.