First released in 1986, the American Silver Eagle quickly became one of the most popular bullion coins in the world. Most coin collectors, especially those who treasure U.S.-minted coins, have more than a few in their collections. It is considered one of the most beautiful coins ever minted and is the world’s only Silver bullion coin whose weight, content and purity are guaranteed by the United States government. Spend some time learning a bit more about this popular collector piece — then you can make smart purchasing decisions when it comes time to add the American Silver Eagle to your collection!
Composed of 99.9% Silver, the American Silver Eagle is truly a Silver coin. It has a $1 face value and is only available in a 1 troy ounce size. The United States Mint certifies the content, weight and purity of the Silver that composes the coin and makes sure it meets the standards they put in place. The most common version, the business strike, is intended for circulation and is popular amongst investors, while the proof and burnished versions are more popular with collectors.
The American Silver Eagle has been minted at three different United States Mint locations since its inception in 1986: The San Francisco Mint, the Philadelphia Mint and the West Point Mint. The first coin was struck in San Francisco on October 29, 1986.
Because the American Silver Eagle is made of 99.9% Silver, it is a popular investment piece for many. In fact, during the recession between 2008 and 2010, the U.S. Mint suspended selling proof sets and had an allocation program in place. This meant that the secondary market prices on these products were higher. This was a short-term financial problem, but proved the point that Precious Metals were a sure bet in economic downturn.
The obverse of the Silver Eagle coin depicts Adolph A. Weinman’s Walking Liberty Half Dollar design, used from 1916 to 1947. This image is one of the most cherished and well-known designs ever to grace coins minted by the United States. The reverse of the American Silver Eagle coin is just as impressive as the obverse, featuring an American eagle, the very symbol of our nation’s freedom, echoing patriotism and national pride.
Because of its popularity, the American Silver Eagle coin sparked a number of special issues. In 1993, a Philadelphia Set was created commemorating the bicentennial of the striking of the first United States coins in the city. Other special issues include a Millennium set and a Reverse Proof Silver Eagle.
The American Silver Eagle is a relatively new coin when compared to many of the others in the U.S. coin lineup. However, it has a storied history and is a popular collector piece. Take the time to look over the options available and consider adding a few to your collection today.