Andrew Jackson Replaced as the Face of the $20 Bill
On Wednesday, April 20, the United States Treasury department announced that while Alexander Hamilton will remain the face of the $10 banknote, Harriet Tubman, an anti-slavery activist from the Civil War era, will be replacing the seventh president, Andrew Jackson, on the front $20 banknote. Jackson will still appear, simply on the back instead.
This has both appeared as a welcome change and a controversy. Hillary Clinton, the leading Democratic presidential candidate, called this change a “great historical announcement” as she spoke at a primarily African-American church on April 24. She also claimed that during her work as a New York senator she helped gather the funds to preserve Tubman’s home in Auburn.
The Thursday after the announcement Trump appeared on NBC’s Today Show and commented on the issue.
“I think Harriet Tubman is fantastic,” Trump said. “I would love to- I would love to leave Andrew Jackson and see if we can maybe come up with another denomination. Maybe we do the $2 bill or we do another bill.”
Meanwhile, those in Jackson’s home state of Tennessee feel this action was about as politically correct as it was an attempt to tear down Jackson’s legacy in favor of Tubman’s accomplishments. During his day as president, fondly called “Old Hickory,” Jackson was seen as a war hero and a populist who fought for the common man. He is, however, also accredited with the Trail of Tears. In contrast, Tubman was an abolitionist and humanitarian who fought for the freedom of slaves during the civil war. Jackson was a white slave owner.
Senator Lamar Alexander, representing Tennessee, believes both have earned their places in history and are American hero. Choosing to honor Tubman does not make Jackson’s achievements and successes any more insignificant.
The change will be made by 2020.
A photo of a roll of $20. Courtesy of TaxRebate