American Silver Eagle 25th Anniversary Set Announced

by Darrin Lee Unser on August 25, 2011 · 8 comments

United States Mint Image of the 2011 Proof American Silver Eagle

United States Mint image of the 2011-W Proof American Silver Eagle -- one of the five coins to be included in the American Silver Eagle 25th Anniversary Set

United States Mint Deputy Director Richard A. Peterson gave collectors some welcome news Friday when he announced a forthcoming American Silver Eagle 25th Anniversary Set.

Details about the Silver Eagle anniversary collection, due out in late October, generated further excitement when it was revealed that it would feature two unexpected issues. The five coins announced as a part of the set include:

  • 2011 bullion American Silver Eagle
  • 2011-W Proof American Silver Eagle — struck in West Point
  • 2011-W Uncirculated American Silver Eagle — struck in West Point
  • 2011-S Uncirculated American Silver Eagle — struck in San Francisco
  • 2011-P Reverse Proof American Silver Eagle — struck in Philadelphia

The first three coins were foreseeable as they have been around as an annual offering from the inception of the Mint’s American Eagle program or, as is the case with the 2011-W uncirculated version, since 2006.

The first two coins listed above are already available individually. The United States began selling the bullion 2011 Silver Eagle through its network of authorized distributors on January 3. The collector proof version was released on June 30 for $59.95. The third uncirculated 2011-W Silver Eagle is scheduled to launch September 29 for a yet-to-be announced price.

If the last two coins are minted only for the set, they would be key in a collection due to their limited mintage alone. The Mint has indicated that it will only produce 100,000 of the American Silver Eagle 25th Anniversary Sets. The coins would only fall behind the 1995-W Proof Silver Eagle as the least minted in the history of the twenty-five year program. Records show that 30,125 of those were sold to the public. They now can go for several thousand dollars each on the secondary market.

American Silver Eagles date back to 1986. That year saw the release of the first bullion strike as well as the first proof. Those two annual coins were joined in 2006 by the first uncirculated issue. 2006 was also when the Mint released a special reverse proof, which has a frosted background with a polished, mirror-like foreground. It was only available for a short time, was struck in Philadelphia, and could only be purchased through a limited mintage set that celebrated the Eagles’ 20th anniversary.

The uncirculated American Silver Eagle coins carry mintmarks and have all been manufactured at West Point in 2006, 2007, and 2008. None were produced in 2009 and 2010. Although the San Francisco Mint is no stranger to Silver Eagles, the "S" mint mark on the uncirculated version in the anniversary set would be a first. From 1986 to 1992, proofs were struck at San Francisco, and more recently, as of May 31, extra bullion coins were produced there. Bullion coins, however, do not have a mintmark.

Since their introduction twenty-five years ago, Silver Eagles have contained the same obverse and reverse designs. This includes the obverse Adolph A. Weinman image of "Walking Liberty" that was first designed for the 1916-1947 silver half dollar. It is joined on the reverse by a heraldic eagle with shield design created by John Mercanti.

According to the Mint’s announcement, all five coins in the 25th anniversary set will come in one hardwood presentation case that has been specially designed for the collection. An issue price has not been stated.

With its limited availability, unique strikes, and a household order limit of 5, the anniversary set is expected to create a bit of hysteria upon release, much like the mania the Lincoln Coin and Chronicles set stirred up in 2009 with its 50,000 limit. Initial demand for Lincoln five-coin set brought the Mint’s ordering system to a standstill during its first few hours and within 30 hours, orders hit their maximum level.

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

James September 15, 2011 at 8:59 pm

Anyone heard when in Oct.?

John September 20, 2011 at 12:38 am

In the interest of collectors,considering the limited availabilty of the anniversary set ,the household limit of 5 should be reduced.

Jim October 10, 2011 at 8:01 am

When in October, anyone know? James AND Jim want to know! Thanks!

joe October 10, 2011 at 8:27 pm

No more than two to a house hold give me a chance.

CoinNews.net October 10, 2011 at 8:32 pm

More information should be available soon. As of Oct. 10, there is word yet on price or a release date.

TJ October 19, 2011 at 3:58 pm

The last I heard it was to be released on October 27th….don’t know how true that is but hope it helps.

Brian October 24, 2011 at 1:20 pm

The US Mint sent out everybodies subsciption Silver Eagles at the higher price, then made them unavailable for 2 weeks (the return policy from the Mint is 7 days) THEN, they made the Eagle available at the lower cost to those that didn’t have subscriptions. All that time, the price of Silver fluxuated a couple of dollars an ounce. And they refuse to refund the difference of the two prices to those that had subscriptions. Considering this is the FIRST year they started to sell the coins after a 2 year suspension, it appears they did this intentionally to make extra money before the price drop went into affect. They just screwed every subscriber in the US Silver Eagle program. And now they want DOUBLE the price of Silver for the 5 coin set. Are they just TRYING to run off the collectors? What a racquet. What a rip off. I’m tempted to STOP buying coins from the Mint becasue of it. They have made literally thousands of dollars from my purchases over the years and now they want to screw ALL of the subscribers for less than $10 per coin. What has collecting come to?

Terry October 28, 2011 at 11:25 am

It took me 5 hours to finally get thru to the final web screen in order to purchase these sets- I’m got lucky and got 5 sets. Calling their customer service line was useless as well- busy for 5 hrs-

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