SIDNEY — “The initial order of 250 Bicentennial silver coins is sold out!” Bicentennial Committee Chair Mike Barhorst announced. “They coins were gone within twenty-four hours of being delivered to the three distribution sites – the Shelby County Historical Society, Peoples Federal Savings & Loan, and Mutual Federal Savings Bank.”
“There were quite a number of people who did not preorder coins who were disappointed when they stopped by one of the distribution sites and found the coins were gone,” Shelby County Commissioner Bob Guillozet said. Guillozet co-chaired the Bicentennial Coin Subcommittee.
“Had the preorders surpassed the initial order of 250 coins, we could have increased the order as they were being minted,” Guillozet said. “We had no idea as to what the demand might be, and we didn’t want to have coins remaining unsold.”
The one ounce, .999 fine silver coins were minted by Osborne Coinage of Cincinnati and designed by Mary Beth Monnier, President of Creative Marketing Strategies. Monnier is a member of the Bicentennial Committee.
“Mary Beth used the graphics from the bicentennial logo in the coin design,” Shelby County Commissioner Bob Guillozet stated. Guillozet went on to explain that one side of the coin contains the year of the County’s founding (1819) and the year of the bicentennial celebration (2019). The same side of the coin also contains the four words that the Bicentennial Committee believe best represent Shelby County: freedom, families, farms and industry.
The other side of the coin contains the names of Shelby County’s current villages and lone city. It also includes stylized images for families, freedom, farms and industry.
“Freedom is represented by Shelby County’s flag, families by a mother, father and children, farms by a barn, and, industry by three interconnecting gears,” Guillozet explained. “Mary Beth did a great job of taking our ideas and creating a coin that will still have meaning two hundred years from now!”
“We will order a second minting of the coins for delivery on or about April 1,” Guillozet stated. “Those who would like to have one or more of the coins should pick up an order form and either mail it or hand-deliver it to the Shelby County Commissioner’s office.”
“We will base the next order on the number of coins preordered,” Guillozet continued. “We are not going to order additional coins in the hope that someone might purchase them. So if you want one of the coins, you need to preorder it.”
The one-ounce silver coins are $40 each. They are delivered in a protective plastic cover, which can be removed if the purchaser desires to do so. The coins are paid for at the time of delivery, not when they are ordered.
Order forms are available at the Shelby County Commissioners office, Sidney City Hall, the Shelby County Historical Society, Mutual Federal, Peoples Federal, Jackson Center Village Hall, Russia Village Hall, Fort Loramie Village Hall, and Anna Village Hall.
Shelby County’s near year-long bicentennial celebration will begin April 1, 2019.
“Believe it or not, Shelby County was ‘born’ on April Fools Day in 1819,” Barhorst said. “Originally, the land that became Shelby County was part of what was once a much larger Miami County.”
“Indeed, Shelby County too was originally much larger than it is today,” Barhorst said. “As the population of Ohio grew and new counties were organized, Auglaize County was created from part of what was once a much larger Shelby County.”
Plans are underway for the bicentennial’s opening celebration. That celebration will be held on Courthouse Square. It is expected that the schedule of events that are planned for each month will be announced in early January 2019.