Cherokee Nation’s Wilma Mankiller Honored With New Quarter

News 6 - June 7, 2022 5:51 am

Wilma Mankiller-first woman named Chief of the Cherokee Nation.

AHLEQUAH, Oklahoma – 

The U.S. Mint released the first quarters featuring Wilma Mankiller, who was the first woman named Chief of the Cherokee Nation.

A celebration honoring her life and work was held in Tahlequah on Monday.

Related Story: Cherokee Nation To Hold Ceremony Commemorating Release Of Wilma Mankiller US Quarter

The Wilma Mankiller coin is the third to be released as part of the American Women Quarters Program, making history for the Cherokee Nation.

“It’s a very historical moment, happy moment for all of us. Not only for me, but the family and the tribe and Native American and women, because of her women leadership,” said Charlie Soap, Mankiller’s widower and Cherokee Community Advocate.

She was the first woman chosen to serve as Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation.

“It would take me a while to say all the good things about Wilma because she was very well-rounded in terms of her love for people, leadership,” Soap said.

The civil rights icon left behind a major legacy with accomplishments in community development, education, and healthcare.

Mankiller received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1998.

Now, her mark will be made around the country with this quarter.

“And somebody who continues to inspire us to this day. That’s the reason that she’s being honored on the quarter because she continues to have an impact. And I think this symbolizes that impact,” said Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin Jr.

During a ceremony, representatives from the U.S. Mint presented the quarter.

Mankiller is one of five women who will be honored on quarters this year.

“Because the coins tell a story. The American story and they reflect on who we are and what matters to us,” said T.V. Johnson, U.S. Mint Chief of the Office of Corporate Communications.

The coin shows Mankiller wearing a traditional shaw gazing at the future with the wind at her back.

It also features the seven-pointed start of the Cherokee Nation.

“She did an extraordinary job being a chief or leader, very proud of her and we miss her a lot,” Soap said.



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