Today, July 9, 2012, the United States Mint released the 2012-P Chaco Culture National Historical Park Five Ounce Silver Uncirculated Coin for $204.95. It is the second of the 2012-dated numismatic five ounce uncirculated coins.
As one of the fifty-six designs honoring national sites across every state, territory, and the District of Columbia, the latest issue commemorates the national historical park in New Mexico.
Chaco Culture Silver Coin Ordering Details
Orders for the 2012-P Chaco Culture National Historical Park Five Ounce Silver Uncirculated Coin are accepted directly from the United States Mint website at http://www.usmint.gov/catalog and by phone at 1-800-USA-MINT (872-6468). The standard $4.95 shipping and handling fee applies to all domestic orders.
When the prior strike in the series launched, the El Yunque silver uncirculated coin, the U.S. Mint was able to start deliveries immediately. It is expected that the Chaco Culture coin will follow suit.
Uncirculated Coin Specifications and Designs
Like the previous eleven collector pieces in the America the Beautiful Five Ounce Silver Uncirculated Coin™ series, the Chaco Culture coin is composed of five ounces of .999 fine silver, has a three inch diameter, and bears the "P" mint mark on the obverse indicating its production in Philadelphia Mint. Its edge is incused with, ".999 FINE SILVER 5.0 OUNCE."
The designs on each side are large replications of those on the Chaco quarter that was released into circulation on April 2, 2012. Two elevated kivas of the Chetro Ketl Complex are featured on the reverse against a background of the north wall of Chetro Ketl and the north wall of the canyon. The illustration was the creation of U.S. Mint Master Designer Donna Weaver. It was engraved by U.S. Mint Sculptor-Engraver Phebe Hemphill. Inscriptions are: "CHACO CULTURE," "NEW MEXICO," "2012" and "E PLURIBUS UNUM."
The obverse bears the familiar portrait of President George Washington by John Flanagan. It was digitally enhanced for the America the Beautiful Quarters® Program, so the subtle details of the image is all the more visible on the three inch landscape of the new collector silver coin. Inscriptions are: "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA," "LIBERTY," "IN GOD WE TRUST," "P" and "QUARTER DOLLAR."
Mintage and Sales Expectations
2012-dated America the Beautiful Five Ounce Silver Uncirculated Coins have a mintage limit of 25,000, and there are no household ordering limits.
Previous releases for this series had been starting swift, lately between 6,000 and 9,000 in the first 4-6 days. As with most new coins though, sales start strong and fade quickly over time.
In late June, the U.S. Mint released the investment-grade bullion version of the Chaco Culture National Historical Park five ounce silver coin, but demand has been soft to date. 3,200 were ordered during its first week, and 1,000 more since. If the investor strike is any indication for the collector version, then the U.S. Mint will be lucky to accept 6,000 orders during the first week of availability.
There are a few differences between the bullion and the uncirculated versions. Namely, the bullion strikes are only sold to the Mint’s network of authorized dealers, like bullion American Silver Eagles and American Gold Eagles. The collectible uncirculated ones are sold directly to the public. Second, the bullion version does not have a "P" mint mark on the obverse even though it is still minted in Philadelphia, but the collector strikes do. And third, the collector strikes come in special packaging that includes a Certificate of Authenticity. The bullion versions are sold without special U.S. Mint packaging or certificates.
2011 – 2012 5 Oz Silver Uncirculated Coin Sales
While the first five 2010-dated uncirculated coins are no longer available, all five of the 2011 are still on sale. Below is a list of the national sites and parks they commemorate, plus their latest sales information as of July 2, 2012.
|Year||5 Oz Silver Uncirculated Coin||Latest Sales|
|2011||Gettysburg National Military Park, PA||22,282|
|2011||Glacier National Park, MT||18,713|
|2011||Olympic National Park, WA||16,352|
|2011||Vicksburg National Military Park, MS||16,428|
|2011||Chickasaw National Recreation Area, OK||14,710|
|2012||El Yunque National Forest, PR||10,920|
|2012||Chaco Culture National Historical Park, NM||–|
|2012||Acadia National Park, ME||–|
|2012||Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, HI||–|
|2012||Denali National Park and Preserve, AK||–|
Chaco Culture National Historical Park
The remains of the Chacoan Culture provide a remarkable window into their ancient world that thrived between 850 and 1250 AD. Today, more than 34,000 people visit the remote location annually.
The large round rooms featured on the Chaco quarter and silver coin are called kivas. Kivas are believed to have been areas that were used by men and women for various ceremonies, such as dance, prayer vigils, and other types of social events.
To learn more about the historical park, visit http://www.nps.gov/chcu.