OTD: Mounties move western headquarters

On today’s date in 1882, the North-West Mounted Police (NWMP), a predecessor to today’s Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), was ordered to move its western headquarters from Fort Walsh to Pile of Bones in present-day Regina, Sask.

Nine years earlier, Parliament passed an act to establish the “Mounted Police Force for the North-West Territories.” In 1874, the first 300 members of the NWMP came to present-day Saskatchewan and Alberta. Throughout the following decade, NWMP headquarters relocated several times – from Fort Garry, Fort Dufferin, Swan River, Fort Macleod and Fort Walsh – before eventually settling in a central location beside Wascana Creek, just outside of Regina.

Completed in September 1882, Regina Town Station was the first police station in Regina.

The RCMP’s centennial was marked with a 25-cent coin issued by the Mint in 1973.

1998 RCMP DOLLAR

In 1998, the Royal Canadian Mint celebrated the RCMP on that year’s Proof double dollar set—the only set to feature both a commemorative silver dollar and the aureate dollar depicting the common loon.

The set also includes 50-, 25-, 10-, five- and one-cent coins as well as a “toonie.”

The Proof silver dollar, meanwhile, was designed by Adeline Halvorson and commemorates the 125th anniversary of the founding of the NWMP, a member of which is featured on the reverse.

The coin’s obverse bears the effigy of Queen Elizabeth II by artist Dora de Pedery-Hunt.

1973 RCMP QUARTERS

The 1973 25-cent ‘Large Bust’ variety (shown above) was struck with the obverse die of the previous year’s quarter, which featured a larger bust of Queen Elizabeth II and fewer than 100 beads.

In 1973, the Mint featured the RCMP on a 25-cent coin to celebrate the national police force’s 100th anniversary.

Designed by late RCMP Staff Sergeant Paul Cederberg, who died in 2014, the coin depicts an RCMP officer atop his horse with 100 stylized beads struck around the edge.

Nearly 136 million of these coins were struck by the Mint in 1973, but about 10,000 pieces were accidentally made using the obverse die of the previous year’s quarter, which featured a larger bust of Queen Elizabeth II and fewer than 100 beads, according to The 2019 Charlton Coin Guide.

While this scarce “Large Bust” variety commands a premium – it’s listed in Trends at $215 in About Uncirculated-50 – the regular “Small Bust” variety is only worth face value.

Another RCMP-themed coin, this a silver dollar also designed by Cederberg, was issued in 1973. Although there’s only one design, there were two cases of issue—a black leatherette case produced for Canadian citizens and another blue leatherette case for RCMP officers only.

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