This 2014 $1000 pure gold coin is struck in an incredible 10 ounces of 99.99% pure gold, a first for the Royal Canadian Mint. It commemorates the onset of the First World War, and particularly honours the First Contingent of the Canadian Expeditionary Force (CEF). This ten-ounce, 99.99% pure gold coin has a diameter of just over 76mm, and boats an extremely low mintage of only 40 coins worldwide, making this an incredible collecting opportunity. As a pure gold coin, this item is GST/HST-exempt.
The illustration on this coin by Canadian artist Yves Berube freezes a poignant moment in time: a lone solider turns his back to the viewer as he leans against the sterns guardrail to gaze at the retreating cliffs of the towering Gaspe Peninsula. The ship likely the SS Megantic, one of the first ships to transport Canadians to British soil in October 1914; above the solider in the foreground, the Canadian Red Ensign flaps in the wind. The set of the soldier's shoulders indicates that he is aware of the trials that lay ahead of him as he leaves his beloved country behind.
The Canadian Expeditionary Force:
The CEF was comprised mostly of volunteers. About 50% of the Force consisted of British-born Canadian men, though French Canadians, Black Canadians and First Nations men made a significant contribution to the Force. The CEF was regarded by both their allies and enemies as the most efficient Allied Military Formation on the Western Front, so much so, in fact, that the Germans nicknamed the CEF the "storm troopers".