Popularity and Origins of the American Silver Eagle Coins

The 2014 American Eagle silver coin hit the headlines this week due to a new surge in its popularity. Talk of rationing the coins took place in order to establish the best way to stabilise supplies. The Royal Mint, who sell the coins, said in a statement that the demand for these coins at the present time was completely unprecedented. Over four million of the coins were sold in September alone with a further two million already having been sold this month.

The surge seems to have been driven by low silver prices in the past few weeks. The Royal Mint is refusing to release any information on the number of these silver coins that it holds in reserve so it is impossible to know how close to a rationing situation they are getting. However, a spokesman said that they were currently able to meet the growing demand.

Origins of the American Eagle Silver Coin

In 1986, the Mint of the United States began producing new gold and silver coins and American Silver Eagles were the silver half of this new production. More than 230 million of these coins have been made since this time. There are several different designs of the coin although they typically include Lady Liberty with various inscriptions on both sides. There is also a design that displays an eagle with a shield and an olive branch.

In the first eight years of production, these coins were minted in San Francisco and had an ’S’ marked into them. However, from 1993 until the year 2000, this minting took place in Philadelphia so the ’S’ was replaced with a ‘P’. Ever since 2001, American Silver Eagle coins have been minted in West Point and as such have had a ‘W’ marked on instead. On the 20th anniversary of the coins creation, a new design was produced and the Mint sold them directly to collectors.

1995 also marked an important year for these coins at it was the year that the Mint released a limited edition collectors set. This set contained a special coin that was only available to buy with the entire set. 30,125 sets were made and they each sold for $999.The special coin in this set would sell in the present day for upwards of $5,000 alone.

American Eagle silver coins have been a popular choice for investors and collectors since their release but don’t generally tend to sell in such large numbers as they have been in recent months.

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