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What is a commemorative coin?

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Quick Answer

A commemorative coin is a coin that is made to honor or celebrate a person, an event, an institution or a place. Commemorative coins are legal tender, but are not put into circulation.

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Full Answer

Commemorative coins made in the United States help raise money for organizations and to build new museums and attractions, pay for upkeep of national monuments and help support some Olympics programs.

For example, in honor of the 100th anniversary of Orville and Wilbur Wright's first flight in an airplane, the U.S. Mint produced a series of coins. The proceeds of these coins help pay for the maintenance of the Wright Brothers National Memorial Park.

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