The First Spouse Gold Coin series began its second year in 2008. The series had begun in 2007 to complement with the Presidential Dollar Program by creating 24 karat one half ounce gold coins to honor the spouse of each President. After the first two coins were released simultaneously, the remaining coins have been released to roughly coordinate with the release of each corresponding Presidential Dollar.
For 2008, two of the Presidents being honored on Presidential Dollars served in office without a spouse. The authorizing legislation for the First Spouse Gold Coin program provides stipulations for the coin design in these situations. The obverse of the coin is to carry an image of Liberty from circulation coins of the era of the Presidential term. The reverse designs will be representative of themes of the President. For coins released during 2008, both Andrew Jackson and Martin Van Buren served in office without a spouse.
A total of four different First Spouse Gold Coins were released during 2008. This is the number of coins which are released under the program for all but two years. The following coins were issued during 2008:
The obverse of the first two coins feature portraits of the First Ladies. The obverse of the Andrew Jackson coin features Liberty from the Capped Bust Half Dollar, and the obverse from the Martin Van Buren coin features Liberty from the Liberty Seated Dime. Reverse designs include the reopening of the White House, a journey across Europe, “Old Hickory” the war hero, and a young Martin Van Buren reading under a tree.
Mint: West Point (W mint mark)
Weight: 0.5000 troy oz. (15.554 g)
Composition: 0.9999 fine gold
Diameter: 1.041 inches (26.49 mm)
Thickness: 0.074 inches (1.88 mm)