Rev. M. R. Watkinson,
Minister of the Gospel from Ridleyville, Pennsylvania,
November 13, 1861
to Secretary Chase
Dear Sir: You are about to submit your annual report to the Congress respecting the affairs of the national finances.One fact touching our currency has hitherto been seriously overlooked. I mean the recognition of the Almighty God in some form on our coins.
You are probably a Christian. What if our Republic were not shattered beyond reconstruction? Would not the antiquaries of succeeding centuries rightly reason from our past that we were a heathen nation? What I propose is that instead of the goddess of liberty we shall have next inside the 13 stars a ring inscribed with the words PERPETUAL UNION; within the ring the allseeing eye, crowned with a halo; beneath this eye the American flag, bearing in its field stars equal to the number of the States united; in the folds of the bars the words GOD, LIBERTY, LAW.
This would make a beautiful coin, to which no possible citizen could object. This would relieve us from the ignominy of heathenism. This would place us openly under the Divine protection we have personally claimed. From my hearth I have felt our national shame in disowning God as not the least of our present national disasters.
To you first I address a subject that must be agitated.
As a result, Secretary Chase instructed James Pollock, Director of the Mint at Philadelphia, to prepare a motto, in a letter dated November 20, 1861:
Dear Sir: No nation can be strong except in the strength of God, or safe except in His defense. The trust of our people in God should be declared on our national coins.
You will cause a device to be prepared without unnecessary delay with a motto expressing in the fewest and tersest words possible this national recognition.
How beautifully written…could we think in such ways nowadays, with digital currencies just about to take over the history of mankind? We have quite humorous features, first, we get rid of GOD (as if we could really get rid of gravity) in one part of the world, then the second part gets inspired and becomes communistic, in the meantime, the first one brings GOD back in the design of its currency. After a while, the second one realizes that it cannot get rid of gravity and that ALMIGHTY had been in its cultural heritage for centuries so it re-installs it in its constitution while the first one is getting rid of HIM for the second time, by going digital, inspiring the third part of the world.
We still have that insignificant problem with gravity but I am sure we will conquer that with covid vaccine.