Some people may know the name while others have seen her movies. Born 1905 in Los Angeles, California, Anna May Wong, one of the first world-breaking Chinese American film stars in Hollywood.
She left a legacy for many future actors and actresses in the film industry, including for women and Asians.
Because of her long and enduring history in the film industry and racism, the Anna May Wong Quarter has become the fifth coin in the American Women Quarters™ Program. It honors her appearance in more than 50 movies with roles in; silent films, television, stage and even in one of the first Technicolor movies to ever come out, “The Toll of The Sea”.
Despite the unforgiving history of racism and discrimination in film, she still gained international popularity and success among many because of her true talent.
She was just a teenager in the early 1920s when she earned her first role and ever since then she ventured into various offers and roles in TV shows and movies despite the limitations that were put on her.
In 1961, she unfortunately suffered a heart attack due to the long years of alcohol consumption and cirrhosis on top of the racist adversity she had endured for years and years.
She was always able to make a long-lasting impression and this coin would only commemorate her career success and fight against stereotypes, but as a way for many to seek out her history and become inspired by it.
In other articles however, many were quick to point out the two sides of the coin and what it represents. While the entirety of the coin depicts the success and respect for Anna May Wong, there is still an afterthought that it also represents the career that she should’ve had due to the impediments on her movie career from the racist climate.
The coin has specific features. On one side, it depicts a portrait of George Washington and the other side features a close-up image of Anna May Wong with her head resting on her hand, surrounded by the bright lights of a marquee sign. Her iconic and memorable pose.