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Australia Korean War

2003-M  One Dollar reverse 2003-M  One Dollar obverse

2003-M One Dollar

Reverse Designer:Vladimir Gottwald Obverse Designer:Ian Rank-Broadley Size:25mm Weight:9g Edge:Interrupted Composition:92% Copper
6% Aluminium
2% Nickel


Sales History


Three years, one month, and two days of war that will never be forgotten. The Korean War was the culmination of differences of a country that had been split since the Second World War. The Royal Australian mint issued this commemorative one dollar to mark 50 years since the ceasefire on the 27th July 1953. The reverse was designed by Vladimir Gottwald and features a dove symbolising peace whilst the background reflects the stainless steel spars from the Australian National Korean War Memorial in Canberra. There are also the floral emblems of Australia and South Korea surrounding the dove. The legend reads "1953 KOREAN WAR 2003 ONE DOLLAR". The obverse features the Ian Rank-Broadley effigy of HM Queen Elizabeth II along with the legend "ELIZABETH II AUSTRALIA 2003". Four counter-stamped varieties were produced; Sydney (S), Melbourne (M), Canberra (C), and Brisbane (B).

Melbourne (M) counter-stamp on 2003-M (Korean War) one dollar piece. Melbourne (M) counter-stamp on 2003-M (Korean War) one dollar piece.

The origins of the Korean War go back to the end of World War II as the responsibility for the country was given to the Soviet Union and the United States of America. In the north, the Soviet Union fostered a communist style whereas the south, the United States supported local control. Over the years the tensions rose and eventually both sides began building forces against the 38th Parallel, which was the dividing line. On the 25th June 1950, the north sent invading forces into the south and war began.

The UN Security Council sent 21 countries in to assist the USA in the Korean War and Australia was the first to arrive with it's Army, Navy and Air force (Australian War Memorial, 2014) . The Armistice was signed signalling peace and each of the nations withdrew two kilometres in accordance with the agreement, forming the Demilitarised Zone which still exists today. Australian Forces remained in Korea as part of the multi-national peacekeeping force until 1957. Over 17,000 Australians served during the Korean War, of which 340 were killed and over 1,500 were wounded. A further 29 had become prisoners of war.

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