Canada, 1943. With the disastrous Dieppe Raid still fresh in their minds, Canadians began the year with tragic news from the Battle of the Atlantic and ended it with successes in Sicily. The end of the war was still two years away. But 1943 brought a hopeful shift that was fuelled in part by Canada’s effort on the home front, where our sacrifices and resolve were represented by a coded message on a new 5-cent coin: We Win When We Work Willingly. Enhanced with special finishes, this bronze coin re-creates a historic design that is a favourite of collectors and historians. The reverse is a three-part tribute: to Canada’s nickel-less 1943 Victory nickel; to its creator, Thomas Shingles; and to the Canadians on the home front, where civilian contributions were crucial to the war effort and, ultimately, the Allied victory.
Your coin re-creates the celebrated Victory design by Thomas Shingles that appeared on Canada’s five-cent coins between 1943 and 1945. A flaming torch represents the sacrifices made by Canadians at home and on the battlefields during the Second World War. Behind it, a big “V” has dual meaning: it alludes to Sir Winston Churchill’s famous “V for Victory” sign, and is also the Roman numeral that represents the denomination (5). On either side of the V are maple leaves, while traditional denticles are replaced by a bilingual version of the original message, “WE WIN WHEN WE WORK WILLINGLY LA BONNE VOLONTÉ EST GAGE DE VICTOIRE”, in Morse code. The obverse features the historical effigy of King George VI by T. H. Paget.
- Struck again: Canada’s famous Victory nickel is brought back to life on this modern tribute to the design and the artist.
- A bronze take that covers two different variations. The use of a bronze alloy is a nostalgic nod to the tombac version of the Victory nickel (1943-44), while the specimen finish has a similar look to the steel version (1944- 45).
- As faithful to the original as possible. With the exception of a modern alloy, an updated bilingual coded message and a much larger size, this collectible piece of history is the culmination of our painstaking attempts to remain faithful to the original design introduced in 1943.
Weight: 54.09 g
Diameter: 50 mm
Face Value: 5 cents
Artist: Thomas Shingles
Burgundy clamshell with black beauty box