Historically, the American Silver Eagle has been the most popular silver bullion coin on the market since its introduction in 1986. In 2012 the Unites States Mint produced and distributed over 33 million total coins and in 2014 they sold over 43 million, proving that it is one of the most sought out and collected investment worthy silver coins in the world.
Containing the same magnificent design for over 25 years, the coin is recognized by collectors & investors all over the globe by its beauty and patriotic design.
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Introduction of the American Silver Eagle
That same year the mint got to work and came up with the design investors know and love today. John Mercanti; the mint's chief engraver in 1985, created a new design for the eagle on the reverse. On the obverse, the mint re-purposed Adolph A. Weinman's design of a Walking Lady Liberty. Each year since, the US Mint has produced and distributed the coins to meet public demand.
American Silver Eagle Purity, Weight & Design
The lowest price American Silver Eagle coins contain one troy ounce of fine silver which is composed of .999 or 99.9% purity. The coin also carries a face value of $1.00 USD in the United States and can technically be used as currency (though the coin is worth much more than this based on silver content alone). Each coin is stamped with its weight and purity which are both backed by the United States and guaranteed to be 100% authentic and pure.
The design on the American Silver Eagle coins is revered by collectors and investors, not only in the United States but also throughout Europe, Asia and other parts of the world. Regarded as one of the most beautiful coins struck in fine silver, the American Eagle has become highly collectible since it was introduced into the precious metals market.
The image of Lady Liberty on the obverse of the coin is modeled after Adolph A. Weinman's design for the walking liberty half dollar in the early 20th century. These coins were minted between 1916 and 1947 as circulating currency and quickly became a favorite of the American people.
The obverse side of the uncirculated 2016 Silver Eagle coin bears an image of the iconic Walking Lady Liberty at its center. She is standing aside the sun which is rising atop a sea of water. The word "Liberty" is indicated in spaced out lettering along the entire top of the coin while the phrase "In God We Trust" is stamped to the right side of Lady Liberty. Below her, the minting year of the coin is stamped.
The reverse side contains an image of a North American Eagle perched behind a shield that resembles the United States flag. In the bird's left talon are three arrows while in its right is an olive branch; representing the Great Seal of the United States. Above the eagle are the words "United States of America" along with 13 stars arranged in a diamond pattern, representing the original 13 colonies. Also stamped along the bottom is the coins weight; "1 oz Fine Silver" and face value; "One Dollar."
In some cases to the left side, directly underneath the birds right talon is the mint mark which tells you where the coin was minted. This will either be a "W" for west point, a "P" for Philadelphia or an "S" for San Francisco; the three branches that strike the coin. Underneath the Eagle's left talon are the letter "JM" for the designer John Mercanti. It is worth noting that some coins do not contain a mintmark. These coins are generally struck at the US Mint's West Point branch in New York; the primary mint responsible for striking the coins.
US Mint Packaging and Storage
When you buy American Silver Eagles in large quantities, they will usually comes in tubes of 20 which are sealed shut with a green cap at the US Mint and therefore the coins inside are considered to be uncirculated. Atop the tube the United States Mint seal is applied. If buying them in even larger quantities, they are usually available in sealed green Monster Boxes which contain five-hundred coins (25 sealed tubes of twenty coins each).
Where To Buy American Silver Eagles
Being that the Silver Eagle is such a popular coin both as an investment and as a collectible, most coin and bullion dealers will have them listed for sale in their catalog. Over the past few years the Silver Eagle was minted in unprecedented numbers to meet high public demand. In the last five years alone well over 200 million coins have been minted, making them readily available on the open market.
Because the Silver Eagle coins are readily available many online dealers such as Provident Metals, APMEX, JM Bullion, SD Bullion, BGASC, Gainesville Coins and many others sell the coin for reasonable premiums over the current silver spot price. For a full list of gold and silver coin dealers view our bullion dealer reviews page.
Reselling Silver Eagles
Since this coin is one of the most well known throughout the world and therefore highly sought out by investors and private collectors, they are usually fairly easy to resell if you ever decide to do so. With high demand and a pretty much unlimited collector base, you are usually able to sell them through a number of outlets. Many online silver coin dealers offer what is called a "buy back" or "sell to us" program where you can sell bullion back to them. You can also find some success selling on ebay or to most local coin shops as well. When selling you can expect to receive spot price or just above spot price for the coin. This of course depends on the coin's condition and the year it was minted among other factors
Estimated Silver Eagle Mintage Numbers (Bullion Coins)
Since the Silver Eagle was released for sale by the US Mint in 1986, nearly 400 million coins have been sold. Below we have put together a list with the estimated number of coins minted during each year that the American Silver Eagle was produced. The dates range from 1986 to last year and include only the Bullion version of the coins.