In 2020 a woman will take over for first Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton as face of the redesigned $10 bill. Which female, you ask? It turns out that’s up to you.
“We’re going to spend a lot of time this summer listening to people,” Treasury Secretary Jack Lew told reporters yesterday.
Among the potential candidates, popular choices include Harriet Tubman, Eleanor Roosevelt, Rosa Parks, Sojourner Truth or Wilma Mankiller (the first female chief of the Cherokee Nation).
Hamilton won’t be totally M.I.A. though. The founding father will be on the reverse side or in a separate series of bills.
Still, the $10-ousting of Hamilton comes as a surprise, given the recent online petition to dethrone President Andrew Jackson from the $20 bill and replace him with abolitionist Harriet Tubman in 2020, the 100th anniversary of U.S. women gaining the right to vote. Even now, the media and Twitterverse both seem largely in favor of booting the highly controversial Jackson instead.
Security of the currency is the primary consideration, however, said Lew, and the $10 bill was next in line for an upgrade.
The last woman to land on U.S. paper currency was Martha Washington, on a silver dollar certificate from 1891 to 1896. The first was Pocahontas, featured on a $20 currency note in 1865.