Few coins grace the pages of economic and global history like the Morgan Silver Dollar. It is a prized piece for coin collectors and history enthusiasts around the world. The purity of the coin and the standards of the U.S. Mint have made this coin a global phenomenon, being sought after around the world.
Perhaps one of the most famous of the mints is the 1921 Morgan Silver Dollar. The 1921 Morgan Silver Dollar was the first standard silver dollar coin minted since the Coinage Act of 1873 ended free silver coining.
So, how long has the Morgan Silver Dollar been around? Here’s some history on the iconic coin and specifically the 1921 Morgan Silver Dollar.
First Coins Struck
The first Morgan Silver Dollars were struck in the Philadelphia Mint back in 1878. They were designed by George Morgan who later served as the chief engraver and were the first coins to feature Lady Liberty rather than the traditional Greek designs.
After a few small design revisions, the Morgan Silver Dollars were also minted in San Francisco and Carson City. These facilities in the Western United States were within proximal range of the silver mines, which made minting easier and safer. New Orleans eventually joined in and the Morgan Silver Dollars were minted through 1904.
The Pittman Act
From 1904 thru 1918 production of the silver dollars ceased because demand was low, and the supply was plentiful. Then Great Britain asked to buy silver coins from the United States Government to prevent their own economic disaster.
The Pittman Act of 1918 required the melting of what the government determined was excess silver dollars and 270 million coins were destroyed. The original die from the Silver Dollars that were minted from 1878 thru 1904 was destroyed by the United States Treasury in 1910.
1921 Morgan Silver Dollar
A renewed desire for the coin led to the Morgan Silver Dollar being minted again in 1921 for one year only. This was also done, at least in part, to satisfy the Pittman Act of 1918. The 1921 Morgan Silver Dollar was the only silver dollar produced at the Denver Mint, making it an especially prized piece. This particular 1921 Morgan Silver Dollar coin has a “D” mint mark signifying the Denver Mint above the word DOLLAR.
The 1921 Morgan Silver Dollar is perhaps one of the most prized and sought-after mints of the silver dollar series. Historians and collectors both love it. It is one of America’s most famous coins with over 500 million minted throughout history. Even today, it attracts tons of new buyers.
The Morgan Dollars were retained in 2021 to commemorate its 100th anniversary and American Heritage. The Morgan Silver Dollar and the Peace Dollar are part of the Anniversary Coin Program which helps commemorate significant people or events in American History. The 2021 Morgan Silver Dollar is popular, but the 1921 Morgan Silver Dollar remains, by far, the most prized and popular coin ever minted by the United States. New buyers, collectors, and historians flock to it annually. A 1921 Morgan Silver Dollar can be worth as little as $30 or as much as $17k, notwithstanding sentimental value, and has now been around for more than a century.