Entries from September 2010 ↓

2010 Proof Gold Eagles on the Way

The United States Mint has confirmed that they will be offering 2010 Proof Gold Eagles for collectors. The standard range of products will be available starting October 7, 2010.

Proof Gold Eagle

One ounce, one half ounce, one quarter ounce, and one tenth ounce coins will be sold individually or as part of a four coin set. Limits are imposed across each of the different products, which yield maximum mintage thresholds for each coin. The limits are as follows:

Product Product Limit Mintage Limit
One-Ounce Coin 25,000 64,000
Half-Ounce Coin 15,000 54,000
Quarter-Ounce Coin 16,000 55,000
Tenth-Ounce Coin 27,000 66,000
Four-Coin Set 39,000 N/A

Last year the 2009 Proof Gold Eagles was canceled, disappointing many collectors. Ever since the series in 1986, there has been at least one proof coin minted for collectors.

The cancellation was deemed necessary by the US Mint due to their interpretation of the law. The US Mint is required to produce American Gold Eagle bullion coins in quantities sufficient to meet public demand. Elevated demand had caused shortages, suspensions, and rationing. Since they were not meeting full demand, they instead diverted all precious metals blanks to the production of more bullion coins. The collector Gold Eagles were canceled.

With that water under the bridge, collectors will finally have a greater variety of numismatic items struck in gold. The 2010 Proof Gold Eagles will join the previously released 2010 Proof Gold Buffalo, and the four different First Spouse Gold Coins.

Grand Canyon Quarter Launches

Yesterday September 20, 2010 was the official circulation release date for the Grand Canyon National Park Quarter. This is the fourth coin in the series of America the Beautiful Quarters which began earlier this year.

Grand Canyon Quarter

On the same date, the US Mint began sales of their bags and rolls containing the quarters. Although the Grand Canyon Quarters contained in these bags and rolls are the same quality as those issued for circulation, the US Mint sells them at a premium. The 100-coin bags ($25 face value) are sold at $35.95 each and the two roll sets ($20 face value) are sold at $32.95 each. All orders are also subject to a charge of $4.95 for shipping and handling.

Today, the official launch ceremony for the Grand Canyon National Park Quarter will be held. The ceremony will take place at the South Rim of the park between Hopi House and Verkamp’s Visitor Center. As customary, a coin exchange will be available for attendees following the ceremony.

Previously, the US Mint indicated the preliminary mintage figures for the Grand Canyon Quarter as 34.6 million Philadelphia Mint coins and 34.8 Denver Mint coins for a combined total of 69.4 million.

2010 James Buchanan’s Liberty First Spouse Gold Coin

Last week, the US Mint began sales of the James Buchanan’s Liberty First Spouse Gold Coin. Amidst the broader series issued to honor the First Spouses of the Presidents of the United States, this issue stands out for featuring a Liberty design, taken from a classic coin.

James Buchanan's Liberty Gold Coin

As James Buchanan had served in office without a spouse, the authorizing legislation provides that an image of Liberty from a circulating coin of the era of his Presidency should be used on the obverse. The reverse should feature themes or images representative of his life. In this case, the obverse features a reproduction of the Liberty Head Quarter Eagle designed by Christian Gobrecht, while the reverse features a scene of young James Buchanan working as a bookkeeper in his family’s country store.

The James Buchanan’s Liberty Gold coin has proved extremely popular with collectors. During the first four days of sales, orders were placed for 6,127 coins, representing slightly more than 40% of the 15,000 coin maximum authorized mintage.

After spending a few years out of the spotlight, will the renewed attention for the First Spouse Gold Coin series last? The next release featuring May Todd Lincoln comes out December 2, 2010.

Grand Canyon National Park Quarter Mintage

Even though the coins have not yet been released into circulation, the preliminary mintage for the Grand Canyon National Park Quarter is already available from the United States Mint.

Grand Canyon Quarter

The America the Beautiful Quarters Program includes five different quarter designs per year featuring National Parks or Sites from across America. Over the course of the next twelve years, one park or site will be depicted from each state, territory, and the District of Columbia. For series with rotating designs, typically the US Mint has stopped production of one design before starting the next. For the current series, they reserve the right to reopen production for earlier designs, as long as it is within the year of issue.

Thus, the figures below are not considered final, but preliminary.

The Grand Canyon Quarter preliminary mintage figures indicate 34.6 million coins produced at the Philadelphia Mint and 34.8 million coins produced at the Denver Mint. The combined total of 69.4 million is just below the prior Yosemite National Park Quarter mintage of 70 million.

2010 Silver Proof Set

About a week ago, the US Mint released the 2010 Silver Proof Set. Along with the previously released 2010 Mint Set and 2010 Proof Set, these three sets comprise the Mint’s most popular annual set offerings.

2010 Silver Proof Set

The latest set includes a total of fourteen different proof coins. The unique aspect of this set is that the dime, quarters, and half dollar are struck in a composition of 90% silver. The remaining seven coins are struck in their standard compositions.

The 2010 Silver Proof Set is priced at a lofty $56.95 per set. Although this seems steep, the precious metals value of the silver coins included in the set is more than $26.

An interesting aspect of this set is the fact that only two of the coins included have not yet been released in prior formats. The clad proof coins were previously released in the regular 2010 Proof Set. The silver proof America the Beautiful Quarters were previously released in the separate five coin set. Only the silver proof Kennedy Half Dollar and Roosevelt Dime are fresh releases.

After the first few weeks of sales, the US Mint sold more than 200,000 of the 2010 Silver Proof Sets, which was a surprisingly strong number!