Silver Coins: A Starting Point
Silver coins are often considered the best investments, and their value depends on how much silver they contain.
Most silver coins are not made up of pure silver. Instead the silver coins in circulation today are only forty percent silver, with the rest of the weight consisting of copper and nickel.
Significant Silver Dollar Coins
The largest silver coin ever minted in the United States was the Eisenhower dollar. It is considered a collector’s piece because of its beauty and historical significance. On the obverse of the coin is a relief of former U.S. president Dwight D. Eisenhower, the World War II hero who served in office from 1953 to 1961. On the reverse of the coin is an image of an American eagle landing on the moon. This image adapts the official Apollo 11 mission patch, and the American eagle symbolizes the Eagle lunar module that delivered the first men on the moon in 1969.
Although the Morgan Silver dollar was a common 19th century coin, it is considered to have great historical significance. It expresses America’s desire to expand westward. These coins can be challenging to collect because there are a number of varieties, as well as overlapping dates.
Decreasing Purity of Silver Used In Coins
As silver has become increasingly scarce in the world, the older the silver coin, the higher the percentage of silver. From 1910 to 1945, silver coins contained ninety-two percent silver. From 1946 to 1964, they contained fifty-percent silver. Today, they contain about forty-percent silver. The U.S. Silver eagle coins sold by the mint are available in 1 ounce.
Silver Coins Valued By Collectors and Investors
Silver coins are prized by collectors because of the quality of strike, design and beauty.
They are also valued by precious metal investors, but for a different reason. They are valued because silver is becoming increasing scarce. This scarcity is due to the high consumption of silver for industrial use and the decreasing availability of silver from silver mines around the world.