Wikipedia:Main Page/Yesterday

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Illinois Centennial half dollar, obverse

The Illinois Centennial half dollar is a commemorative fifty-cent piece struck by the United States Bureau of the Mint in 1918. The obverse side, depicting Abraham Lincoln, was designed by Chief Engraver George T. Morgan; the reverse image, based on the Seal of Illinois, was done by his assistant and successor, John R. Sinnock. Morgan's design is based on a statue by Andrew O'Connor. The State of Illinois asked for a commemorative to mark the centennial of its 1818 statehood. In 1918, after legislation was enacted, the two engravers produced designs, but Treasury Secretary William G. McAdoo required changes, not all of which were made. The coins were minted in August 1918, and were sold to the public for one dollar each. Though many were held by a bank until 1933, all were sold, and profits were used to cover the cost of local centennial celebrations or to help those in need because of World War I. Later writers have generally admired the coin, considering it one of the more handsome American commemoratives. It is valued in the hundreds of dollars today, and occasionally trades for more. (Full article...)

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Persoonia procumbens
Persoonia procumbens

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January 16

Rear entrance to the Führerbunker
Rear entrance to the Führerbunker

Guru Har Rai (b. 1630) · Miguel Ángel Mancera (b. 1966) · Susie Bootja Bootja Napaltjarri (d. 2003)

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Yesterday's featured picture


Chrysopa is a genus of green lacewings in the neuropteran family Chrysopidae. Members of it and Chrysoperla are common in much of North America, Europe and Asia. They share similar characteristics and some species have been moved from one genus to the other and back again. Their larvae are predatory and feed on aphids; as such, members of Chrysopa have been used in biological pest control.

Photograph: Joaquim Alves Gaspar

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