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Everything gets a makeover these days. Movie stars, homes, people who watch "Live with Regis and Kelly," cars...why not US coins?
What was wrong with the old portrait coins, you ask? Why shouldn't we continue to collect coins with presidents and Founding Fathers on them? Don't be in a hurry to toss out Abe Lincoln. Those coins with his profile will still be valuable, especially now that the US Mint redesigns quarters and commemorative coins every ten weeks. However, the release of the statehood quarters made Americans take a new look at the collectible coin.
After all, animal lovers will be happy to know that the vanishing American Bison is on the nickel redesign. Even the historic keelboat that Lewis and Clark used creates an alternative to the same portrait of Thomas Jefferson we've all grown up with. Historians and naturalists will appreciate the American Indians/Native Americans and wildlife Lewis and Clark encountered.
The new collectible coin won't replace the older coin, so don't go banking on your Jefferson nickels skyrocketing in value. Still, it might be time to have your coin collection reassessed, especially if you're planning to buy some of the revamped US coins.
After all, unlike some "Before" and "After" pictures, older vs. redesigned coins won't make you wince. And you won't have to worry that your coin collection has had too much plastic surgery.