Victory! Harriet Tubman to Grace the $20 Bill

943793_10153622515391314_3575777995399450001_nAt long last, a woman’s face will grace the $20 bill.

The Treasury Department announced Wednesday that a portrait of abolitionist Harriet Tubman will adorn the frontside of a new $20, set to be redesigned by 2020. Bizarrely, however, an image of slaveholding president Andrew Jackson—who is currently the face of the $20—will be moved to the backside of the Tubman bill.

Additionally, five suffragists—Lucretia Mott, Sojourner Truth, Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Alice Paul—will grace the backside of the new $10. Alexander Hamilton will remain on the front of the bill.

The Treasury Department had initially proposed replacing Hamilton with an influential American woman, and Tubman was the overwhelming popular choice for the redesign in an unofficial poll. But the department altered course after the Pulitzer Prize-winning Broadway musical Hamilton, about the life of the founding father, renewed his popularity.

“The front of the new $10 will continue to feature Alexander Hamilton, our nation’s first Treasury Secretary and the architect of our economic system,” said Treasury Secretary Jack Lew in a statement. “The new $10 bill will [also] honor the story and the heroes of the women’s suffrage movement against the backdrop of the Treasury building.”

Changes to the $5 bill were also announced: The new design will feature Martin Luther King, Jr., civil rights activist and opera singer Marian Anderson and Eleanor Roosevelt. President Abraham Lincoln will remain on the face of the bill.

The New York Times predicts that it will take until around 2030 for the new bills to begin entering into circulation.

Image via @educationlikeme on Instagram


Stephanie hails from Toronto, Canada. She is a Ms. writer, a master of journalism candidate and a hip hop dancer/instructor/choreographer. She got her start in feminist journalism at the age of 16 when she was a member of the first editorial collective at Shameless magazine—and she has never looked back.