Here’s today’s coin:
Ecuador, 50 centavos, 2000 (KM #108)
In the year 2000, Ecuador officially replaced their failing sucre with the US dollar, making our greenback the official money of their land. They use US banknotes there, but continue to strike their own coins. However, their coins are sized to be compatible with our own, so that American coins can also circulate there. So this coin is sized to work alongside our seldom-used half dollar. The mintage of this coin is unknown, but it is worth exactly 50 cents USD. But since this coin is steel, it is unlikely to circulate here, and you’d be hard pressed trying to spend it at face value in the States.
The coin depicts Eloy Alfaro, revered national leader, who served as Ecuador’s president twice during the turn of the century. Alfaro was a liberal Freemason who fought for freedom of speech, and he pushed for separation of Church and State in a land that was strongly Roman Catholic. His efforts to diminish the political power of the Catholic church made him many enemies, and he was killed by a pro-Catholic mob in 1912.
Weight 11.32 g
Diameter 30.6 mm