|Auction #1077015||NGC Graded 1923 Peace Silver Dollar||Watch This Item|
|Opening Bid: $1.00||Shipping Contiguous US: $12.95|
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|Name:||NGC Graded 1923 Peace Silver Dollar|
|Coin Name:||Peace Dollars|
|Designer:||Anthony de Francisci|
|Metal Content:||90% Silver, 10% Copper|
|Weight:||412.5 grains (26.7 grams)|
|Other Coin Information|
With the onset of World War I, from 1914 to 1918, there was massive desire for peace and hope, felt in the U.S. Mint. From this we have the lovely Peace dollar, which celebrates the newfound peace, in large part thanks to the American Numismatic Association. At this time the Mint was faced with the Pittman Act, which was a law enacted in 1918 meant to enforce the production of millions of silver coins, all to help boost silver-mining. With this the U.S. Mint was faced with a need for millions of silver dollars. The government had 350 million silver dollars melted, to be converted into bullion and then either used to produce subsidiary silver coinage, or simply sold as solid bullion. The government also required replacement dollars to be struck for all coins that were melted. This simple act changed american numismatic history.
The Pittman Act not only help silver producers, but it assisted Great Britain, which at the time was a wartime central. Between 1918 and 1919 the U.S. government had over 270 million silver dollars melted, with over 259,121,554 coins ending up as solid bullion sold to the British. Great Britain used the silver to deal with their monetary crisis in India. At the same time the U.S. melted 11,111,168 silver dollars into raw silver to produce a supplement of its own coins. The coins melted under this act were nearly half the entire population of standard silver dollars made to date, which are counted as different from trade dollars. But, this did not influence the nation's commerce in any way. Silver dollars were limited in circulation use and the remaining pieces in inventory were more than sufficient for serving the commercial needs of the time. There was such a minimal amount in demand that, since 1904, none were produced for more than 12 years.
With a massive amount still in inventory, the Mint did not need to strike new silver dollars to replace the ones that had been melted, however the Pittman Act required it. Therefore in 1921 when the price of silver fell from postwar highs, the Mint massively produced Morgan Silver dollars. The mint made so many it was record breaking. During that single year in 1921, all the mints combined produced more than 86 million examples.
On May 9th, 1921 legislation was passed in Congress calling for the issuance of a new silver dollar to celebrate the glory of postwar peace. It was on this very day that the Morgan dollar production resumed. Congress declared that the new celebratory peace coin would have "an appropriate design commemorative of the termination of the war between the Imperial German Government and the Government of the people of the United States.", which is directly quoted from the coins sponsors. However, this congressional authorization wasn't necessary as the Morgan dollar had been produced for more than the legal minimum of 25 years. Once a coin had reached 25 years of production it is up for replacement without legislative approval.
For the design of the replacement the federal Commission of Fine Arts created a competition which included nine of the United States' finest medalist. These artists included previous U.S. coins designers Victor D. Brenner, Adolph A. Weinman and Hermon A. MacNeil. The winner however, was a young artists and Italian immigrant, Anthony de Francisci. Francisci created an stunning portrait of Miss Lady Liberty which he modeled after his wife Teresa, with the reverse depicting an eagle atop a crag, looking through brilliant rays from the sun. The word "PEACE" is on the rock. This is the only United States coin to ever have that motto.
In the last week of 1921 the Peace dollar went into production. WIth over a million examples produced, it was discovered the the coin's relief was much too high, making it extremely hard to strike. This caused excessive die breakages. Finally in 1922 the Mint corrected the problem by reducing the relief height. Unfortunately, it is agreed upon by many numismatists that this adjustment deters greatly from the beauty of the coin.
Finally, in 1928 production of the Peace dollar was ceased as the U.S. Mint's had produced enough to meet the requirements set by the Pittman Act. With the onset of the Great Depression in 1929 production of silver dollars was limited to an extreme, returning to production in 1934 as more large coins were needed to help support silver certificates. Some of the best coins in this series are the 1934-S, the 1921 and the 1928. Look for the mintmark on the reverse below the word ONE. There are only a few matte proofs and only for the dates 1921 and 1922.
It was not until 1960 that collectors began having interest in the silver dollars, as silver certificate redemptions we in effect from the Treasury. Also,s the Treasury had a lot of publicity at the time for selling $1,000.00 bags of dollars to anyone interested. With Peace dollars available through the bank, but after Treasury Department policy went into effect, Morgan dollars were disbursed only after Peace dollars were paid out. However, collectors found it more practical to assemble collection of smaller denominations rather than completing a set of the rather expensive silver dollar coins. Once the Treasury had disbursed all its Peace Dollars from the vaults, the highly desirable Morgan's started to come fourth, which brought with it a greater interest for collectors in both Peace and Morgan coins.
With just 24 coins creating the whole run of Peace dollars, many collectors assemble complete date-and-mint sets. While high-grade pieces are hard to find, weak strikes are very common, and the open design made the coin highly susceptible to damage and wear. The most common areas for wear is found on Liberty's neck, face and the hair over her ear and above her forehead. The reverse shows most wear on the eagles head, leg and wing.
Four years after the end of the Peace Dollar, Word War II began in Europe. in 1964 the design came close to reproduction, as Congress called for the production of 45 million new silver dollars, reportedly to help serve the needs of casinos. After 316,076 Peace dollars were produced, dated 1964 by the Denver Mint, in May of 1965 this authorization was revoked by President Johnson. While all pieces were to be recalled and melted, it is widely believed that several coins still survive.
BIBLIOGRAPHY: Bowers, Q. David, Silver Dollars & Trade Dollars of the United States, A Complete Encyclopedia, Bowers and Merena, Wolfeboro, NH, 1993. Breen, Walter, Walter Breen's Complete Encyclopedia of U.S. and Colonial Coins, F.C.I. Press/Doubleday, New York, 1988. Miller, Wayne, The Morgan and Peace Dollar Textbook, Adam Smith Publishing Co., Metairie, LA, 1982. Taxay, Don, The U.S. Mint and Coinage, Arco Publishing Co. Inc., New York, 1966. Yeoman, R.S., A Guide Book of United States Coins, 47th Edition, Western Publishing Co., Racine, WI, 1993.
|* Stock photo used, actual coin received will have same specifications, but will not be exact coin pictured.|
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