Silver Dollar Blog - Minting process for a Morgan Silver Dollar

Oct 14, 2011
weighing and counting - Coiner's Department at New Orleans Mint in 1897
 

Have you ever wondered what the minting process was for a  Morgan Silver Dollar? To start with the assistant melter and refiner would calculate the correct portions of the basic materials. The basic material used was 10 % copper plus 90% fine pure silver any clippings, scraps or condemned coins could be used for the silver. 

Next we move on to the melt. They take all that silver and copper and melt it in a casting furnace which is poured into an ingot cast. This cast is sampled at the beginning and end to ensure its content and quality.

The ingots are now rolled out to form a flat sheet with the perfect thickness. Blanks are then punched out from these flat sheets. A sieve is used to separate any access off the coin. The coins were then annealed which means heated and slowly cooled to toughen the coin and remove any internal stresses, polish and clean.

Now we have a planchet – a plain metal disk. The planchets were treated as money at this point.  Each department was responsible for their own planchets. Once the edges were formed the planchet was weighed and inspected. The obverse and reverse die was struck, counted and bagged. 

Image Source: Library of Congress



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