Harriet Tubman will replace Andrew Jackson on the $20 bill, the Treasury Department said on Wednesday. The Department plans unveiling new designs of the $5, $10 and $20 bills in 2020 to mark the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment. All the bills will feature changes to aide the blind. Secretary Lew said he had instructed the Bureau of Engraving and Printing and coordinated with the Federal Reserve to accelerate the process. Lew said there are two things he and the Chair of the Federal Reserve agreed on: “we can’t compromise security and we have to work as quickly as possible,” he said.
Though Hamilton is staying on the front of the $10 bill, an image of multiple women’s suffragists including Lucretia Mott, Sojourner Truth, Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and Alice Paul, will appear on the back. Andrew Jackson will also remain on the $20 bill, he’ll just be moved to the back. Treasurer Rosie Rios, who has been working to get a woman as the face on the currency since she arrived at the Treasury Department, she did not have to sweat before arriving at the choice of Tubman.
“The life of Harriet Tubman is really one of the greater American stories,” Lew said. “I think it’s a story that reflects both American values and American democracy, but also the power of an individual to make a difference in our democracy.”
Harriet Tubman (born Araminta Ross; c. 1822 – March 10, 1913) was an African-American abolitionist,humanitarian, and a Union spy during the American Civil War. Born into slavery, Tubman escaped and subsequently made some thirteen missions to rescue approximately seventy enslaved families and friends, using the network of antislavery activists and safe houses known as the Underground Railroad. She later helped abolitionist John Brown recruit men for his raid on Harpers Ferry, and in the post-war era was an active participant in the struggle for women’s suffrage.