Peace Dollars

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Peace Dollar Coin

The Peace Dollar was minted from 1921 to 1928 and again in 1934 to 1935. It’s one of the most famous coins the United States Mint has ever produced and the last true U.S. dollar coin that was struck for circulation in silver.  The Lady Liberty Peace Dollar holds a distinguished place in the American numismatics, symbolizing the country's aspirations for peace after the tumultuous period of World War I. Minted from 1921 to 1928, and again briefly in 1934 and 1935, this silver dollar features designs that encapsulate the nation's relief and hopeful outlook towards a peaceful future. The Peace Dollar was the last dollar coin issued by the United States Mint for circulation that contained a significant amount of silver, making it a poignant farewell to the era of silver coinage in daily commerce.

The introduction of the Peace Dollar was partly due to the Pittman Act of 1918, which required the U.S. government to mint millions of silver dollars to stabilize the silver market and aid the British government in its post-war recovery. The Peace Dollar thus served not only as a symbol of peace but also played a key role in the economic adjustments of the post-war period.

What Are the Lady Liberty Peace Dollars?

The obverse of the Peace Dollar shows the head and neck of the Goddess Liberty. Her profile features a shining crown resting upon beautiful, cascading hair. The reverse shows an American eagle clutching an olive branch, symbolizing peace. 

The coin’s obverse also has the phrase “LIBERTY” and “IN GOD WE TRUST” inscribed across the top. Other inscriptions read “ONE DOLLAR” and “E PLURIBUS UNUM.” 

The Peace Dollar: Mint Marks

The U.S. mint year is also inscribed. The mint marks on this 1921 coin were “S” and “D.” The “S” signifies “San Francisco,” and the “D” stands for the Denver Mint.

If you check the left of the tail feathers and see no mark, it could have come from the Philadelphia Mint.

The grade will partly determine the coin’s value. While coin collectors might be able to identify certain issues, third parties like the NGC and the PCGS can give a more accurate reading. 

Peace Dollar Design

Designed by Anthony de Francisci, a young Italian immigrant and sculptor, the obverse of the Peace Dollar showcases a profile of Lady Liberty, modeled after his wife, Teresa. This depiction of Liberty is both youthful and radiant, reflecting the optimism of the era. The reverse features a majestic bald eagle at rest, clutching an olive branch, with the word "PEACE" inscribed at the bottom. This imagery was a deliberate departure from the martial symbols often associated with national pride, emphasizing instead the country's dedication to peace and stability.

Anthony de Francisci: The Man Who Designed the Peace Silver Dollar

The infamous designer of the Peace Dollar, Anthony de Francisci, was born in Sicily on July 13, 1887. His family immigrated to the United States when he was eight years old, and he later became a naturalized American at 26.

At the age of 34, Anthony de Francisci designed the artwork and modeled Lady Liberty’s features after his wife, Teresa de Francisci. 

How Did the Morgan Dollar Get Replaced by the Peace Dollar?

The history of the first Peace Dollars goes back to the early 20th century. A major part of the creation of the silver Peace Dollar was the Pittman Act, which aimed to preserve precious metals like gold in the face of heightening global conflict.

After this, the U.S. Mint chose the Morgan Silver Dollar design and began striking silver dollars in 1921. Eventually, a lobby formed and asked the U.S. Mint to strike a coin that symbolized peace after World War I. 

This lobby wasn’t successful in getting Congress to agree on a coinage redesign through legislation, but their attempt made an impact. In December of 1921, Treasury Secretary Andrew Mellon, largely moved by numismatist Farran Zerbe’s written appeal, approved the design proposed for the Peace Dollar. 

Where Can You Buy Peace Dollars?

If you’re looking at a silver coin and aren’t quite sure what you have your hands on, Bullion Shark can help. Experts in coin collecting, Bullion Shark, is the top purveyor of rare coins and a source of numismatic information

Collectors and historians alike cherish the Peace Dollar for its artistic merit and its representation of a significant period in American history. The series includes several key dates and high-relief variants, particularly the 1921 high relief and the 1922 high relief, which are highly sought after by collectors due to their rarity and the intricacies of their designs. The 1928 Peace Dollar, with its low mintage, is also among the most coveted by numismatists.


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 Peace Dollar Coins FAQs

The Peace Dollar is composed of 90% silver and 10% copper. This 90% silver composition was standard for most U.S. silver coins of that era.
The Peace Dollar's last year of issue was 1935. However, it's worth noting that there was an attempt to mint Peace Dollars again in 1964, but all of those coins were subsequently melted down and none were released into circulation. As a result, the official last year of issue for the Peace Dollar remains 1935.

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The Peace Dollar contains 90% silver and 10% copper. Given its total weight of 26.73 grams (or approximately 0.859 troy ounces), the actual silver content (or net pure silver weight) in each Peace Dollar is approximately 24.057 grams or 0.77344 troy ounces of pure silver.
The 1928 Peace Dollar, struck at the Philadelphia Mint (and thus bearing no mintmark), holds the distinction of having the lowest mintage of all Peace Dollars. Only 360,649 of these coins were produced, making the 1928 Peace Dollar one of the key dates and most sought-after coins in the Peace Dollar series. Its low mintage and high demand among collectors often result in a premium price, especially for coins in better condition.
Peace Dollars were minted from 1921 to 1928 and then again from 1934 to 1935. Therefore, the years when Peace Dollars were not minted are: 1929-1933. It's worth noting that there was an attempt to mint Peace Dollars again in 1964, but all of those coins were subsequently melted down and none were released into circulation.

In the Peace Dollar series, "key dates" refer to the years that had lower mintages or are particularly sought after by collectors due to their rarity. Here are the key dates for Peace Dollars:

1921: The first year of issue, and the only year the Peace Dollar was struck in high relief.

1928-P: Struck at the Philadelphia Mint, this year has the lowest mintage of the entire series, making it the primary key date for Peace Dollars.

1934-S: While its mintage isn't as low as the 1928, the 1934-S is considered a key date in higher grades due to its scarcity in uncirculated condition.

These are the primary key dates, but it's worth noting that the value of any specific coin can vary based on its condition, any unique varieties, and the current market demand. Collectors often seek out well-preserved examples of these key dates to complete their collections.