Silver Dollar Blog Posts - July 2012

1888 Silver Dollar

Jul 25, 2012

1888 Silver Dollar

1888  Silver Dollar
Mintage Circulation strikes: 19,183,000
Proofs: 832
There is no mint mark on the coin which means it was minted in Philadelphia.

1888-S Silver Dollar
Mintage Circulation Strikes: 657,000
Proofs: 0
Minted in San Francisco

1888-O Silver Dollar
Mintage Circulation strikes: 12,150,000
Proofs: 0
Minted in New Orleans

Random Facts of 1888

National Geographic Society was founded in Washington D.C.

Great Blizzard of 1888 strikes the NE of the United States. Most severe recorded blizzard in history dumping 40-50 inches of snow in parts of the NE. Winds up to over 45 miles per hour and snowdrifts over 50 feet tall. 

Seriously... Sherlock Holmes has been around since 1888. The start of the adventure "A Scandal in Bohemia" 

First roll-film cameras was patented by George Eastman

Incubator is used for the first time on baby Edit Eleanor McLean

Washington Monument opens to the public

 Van Gogh,  Dutch painter cuts off his left ear

1st wax drinking straw was patented by Marvin C Stone

Grover Cleveland is the president of the United States for March 4th, 1885 - March 4th, 1889

Susan B. Anthony organizes a Congress for Women's Rights in Washington, D.C.

Eadweard Muybridge meets with Thomas Edison to propose a scheme for sound film

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What is the cartwheel effect?

Jul 19, 2012

What is the cartwheel effect?

What is the cartwheel effect all about?

When minting a Morgan dollar the die strikes the blank planchet. During the striking with all that intense pressure the planchet is changed at a molecular level. This intense pressure causes the metal to slow outward. When light strikes these areas you can see the light shine around almost like spokes on a wheel. You might also hear the term stagecoach wheel used when describing the cartwheel effect. When you rotate the coin back and forth you will see the light. Check out the video it's a great example of showing the cartwheel effect on the Morgan dollar. 

Keep in mind that a really old or well circulated coin will not have the cartwheel effect since they would have lost some of their luster. The cartwheel effect doesn't appear on all mint coins. It depends on all the different factors that that go into the striking process. But it is easier to spot on the larger coins rather than the smaller ones. The Morgan Dollar in mint state is known for having this cartwheel effect.

One more reason not to clean your coin... If you dip them in a cleaning solution or use some sort of abrasive cleaner you will be removing those flow lines or the cartwheel effect. You might be trying to clean your coin or remove the toning, but in fact you're reducing the value of your coin at the same time.


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Carson City Morgan Dollars

Jul 11, 2012


In September of 2011 Authors Adam Crum, Selby Ungar and Jeff Oxman released their revised version of  Carson City Morgan Dollars: Featuring the Coins of the GSA Hoard (Official Whitman Guide Which features the coins of the GSA Hoard. 

The book is about how Numismatic experts chronicle the amazing history of the California Gold Rush, its effects on silver mining and the development of Nevada, and the birth of the Carson City Mint. They give the collector and investor a detailed insider's view of today's market for Carson City Morgan dollars, including VAM varieties and focusing especially on GSA-slabbed coins. Whether you collect by date/mintmark or by variety, this in-depth book will make you a more savvy buyer. Includes condition census, market notes, enlarged photographs, valuations, mintages, certification data, prooflike and DMPL coins, and more.

Today you can buy "Carson City Morgan Dollars" at Amazon on sale. Carson City is an intriguing mint indeed. All the way from the birth of the city to the trouble it faced in 1893 when President Cleveland repealed the Sherman Act.  Followed by the final blow for the Carson City mint in 1895 when ingots were discovered to be much lighter when coming back from the melting room. This investigation came up with $75,549.75 of gold missing at the Carson City Mint. The employees were laid off the doors closed. 

By July 1st, 1899 the official title of the building had been changed to assay office. All remaining mint equipment was boxed up and shipped to Philadelphia. 

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Great Video on how they make coins

Jul 02, 2012

How are Silver Coins Minted?

I love coming across gems like this video! I find it so interesting to read and watch the process - How silver becomes a silver coin! They did a great job explaining all the steps along the way! Be sure to check out edrsilver other videos. 

Video credit goes to edrsilver, thanks!

If you have been following along on Morgan Silver Dollar blog you might have heard me talk about the minting process before. For all of you who are taking in the their first glimpse of how silver finds its way to becoming a coin. Then keep on reading to find out! 

Silver doesn't have to be silver straight from the mine they also take silver scraps of any kind and melt it down. You need a lot of heat to melt silver we're talking 2000*F will get you hot enough to melt silver. 

Once the silver is at the perfect liquid temperature they are poured cast into ingots. The silver has to be heated to just the right temperature if it's too hot or too cold it won't pour good. 

Next we're moving on to blanks, but first you have to take that ingot and squeeze it flat. Once it's flattened to the appropriate thickness someone checks this long flat sheet of silver for any scratches or dings on it. You want a smooth surface as you enter into the next phase.  

Now you're holding a blank which is weighed and checked to ensure proper weight and again no scratches or dings. Once it's cleaned, polished and annealed it's time for the die. The die is used to press the design into the silver blank. 

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