Entries Tagged 'Coin Series' ↓

2010 First Sposue Bronze Medal Set

The annual First Spouse Bronze Medal Set is one of the US Mint’s quirky products that I look forward to each year. Even though these are medals, rather than coins, they have a unique sort of charm.

The designs for each medal are taken from the corresponding First Spouse Gold Coins. Some of the inscriptions are removed, such as those indicating the date, and the metal content and purity. On the reverse, the entire outer circle of inscriptions are removed, and instead the image extends to the entire surface of the medal.

Since these are medals, I don’t really expect them to appreciate. About a year ago, I purchased an entire set of the Presidential medals for much less than the original Mint issue prices. Despite my expectations, the First Spouse medals have actually been retaining their value or appreciating. Auction record for prior year sets, show them trading at higher prices.

The 2010 set includes Abigail Adams, Jane Pierce, James Buchanan’s Liberty, and Mary Todd Lincoln.

2010 Mary Todd Lincoln First Spouse Coin

The latest release in the one-half ounce 24 karat gold coin series honoring the First Ladies of the United States featuring Mary Todd Lincoln. She was, of course, the wife of the 16th President Abraham Lincoln.

A portrait of Mary Todd Lincoln appears on the obverse with inscriptions indicating her name, the order and years of the Presidency, “In God We Trust”, “Liberty”, the date and mint mark. The reverse has a scene of the First Lady visiting wounded Union soldiers. The designers of the coin were Phebe Hemphill (obverse) and Joel Iskowitz (reverse).

The Mary Todd Lincoln Gold Coin will be limited to a maximum mintage of 20,000 coins. This is a 33% increase above the level of the previous release, which can be explained by the higher anticipated demand.

It’s tough to say whether or not the latest coin might sell out of the maximum mintage. Actually, the last First Spouse to achieve this was back in 2007, but at that point the maximum was double at 40,000 coins.

At the very least, this will be one of the more remembered releases of the series, with a potentially wider collector base from collectors of Lincoln in numismatics.

America the Beautiful 5 oz. Silver Bullion Coins

This year, the US Mint will begin a new bullion and collector coin series with some unique aspects. The America the Beautiful Silver Coins are struck in .999 fine silver with a bullion weight of 5 troy ounces. The coins will feature the designs of the current quarter dollar series in larger and sharper version.

This is only the second series of silver bullion coins ever offered by the US Mint, the first being the American Silver Eagle. The coins have the curious legal tender face value of 25 cents, ridiculous compared to the market value of 5 ounces of silver.

On the edge of the coin is “.999 fine silver 5.0 ounce”. The edge of the coin has for some reason become an increasingly popular area to put vital information. The Presidential Dollars still contain the date and mint mark on the edge. The motto “In God We Trust” was of course moved to the obverse after some public controversy.

The US Mint will only have 33,000 of each of the five 2010 America the Beautiful Silver Bullion Coins available. This is a ridiculously small number compared to the anticipated demand. In total, there will be just 825,000 ounces of silver available through the ATB Silver Coins for the first year. In November alone, the US Mint sold 4.2 million ounces worth of silver through the American Silver Eagle Program.

I think the coins will be a challenge to find without paying a ridiculous premium. The bullion coins will be distributed through the US Mint’s network of authorized purchasers, who will get them cheap from the US Mint and then hopefully not mark them up too much when reselling to other bullion dealers or the public. The earliest the average collector can get their hands on them will be after that first round of distribution, by which point prices might be crazy.

In consolation the US Mint will strike 27,000 of each design in collectible uncirculated version. These would be sold directly to collectors through the Mint’s website and phone sales. I would think they would have very low limits (i.e. one per household) to stretch the tiny supply as far as possible.

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.

2010 Proof Gold Buffalo Coin

The 2010 American Buffalo Gold Proof Coin went on sale at the United States Mint on June 3, 2010. This will mark the fifth year that collectible versions of the 24 karat gold coin have been offered.

2010 Proof Gold Buffalo

Back in 2006, the bullion series debuted and the US Mint also offered a one ounce proof version of the coin. The same offerings were available in 2007. For 2008, the US Mint greatly expanded the number of collectible offerings by including collectible uncirculated versions and fractional versions of the coin. Although sales were low, these coins have now appreciated in value substantially. Last year, the Mint reverted once again to only offering the one ounce bullion and one ounce proof coin.

The 2010 Proof Gold Buffalo is offered without a household ordering limit and without an established maximum mintage level. The pricing for the coins is $1,510. This price is now nearly double the price of the 2006 Proof Gold Buffalo, which was offered at $800. The increase, of course, is attributable to the higher price of gold.