Saratoga National Historical Park makes its final appearance on a United States Mint collectible product with today’s release of a 3-inch, 5-ounce silver coin depicting a design emblematic of the site in New York. This newest coin is the last of five this year and the 30th overall in the U.S. Mint’s series of America the Beautiful Five Ounce Silver Uncirculated Coins.
New York’s Saratoga National Historical Park preserves the site of the Battles of Saratoga where Americans won a decisive victory over the British in the Revolutionary War. The major military campaign in 1777 ushered in foreign support and marked the beginning of the end of the war.
Saratoga Silver Coin Design
Designs on the large uncirculated coin are twins to those of the smaller Saratoga quarter. It launched into circulation in mid-November with large quantities of them now available in U.S. Mint-branded rolls and bags.
Designed by Barbara Fox and sculpted by Renata Gordon, the reverse depicts a close-up of the moment General John Burgoyne surrendered his sword to General Horatio Gates. The other side, like all America the Beautiful Quarters and companion silver five ounce coins, shows John Flanagan’s effigy of George Washington.
Edges of the 3-inch silver coins are unique. Instead of the reeded treatment found on America the Beautiful Quarters, they are flat and incused with ".999 FINE SILVER 5.0 OUNCE."
Pricing, Change in Pricing and Premiums
Silver has plunged to a more than 6-year low but it hasn’t fallen to the level where the U.S. Mint has reduced prices on silver products. The agency last announced lower prices on silver collectibles in January when the precious metal was at $17.80 an ounce. Thursday’s London silver price is $3.87 lower at $13.93 an ounce. A sustained difference closer to the $5 mark is usually the tipping point for the Mint in changing silver product pricing.
The cost of the new uncirculated coin is $149.95. With its 99.9% pure silver composition and at $13.93 an ounce, it has a melt value of $69.65. That brings the U.S. Mint’s premium per ounce at $16.06. It’s lower than other silver products but a high when compared against the starting prices of past five ounce coins.
Current premiums for the Mint’s one ounce proof and uncirculated American Silver Eagles are $35.02 and $26.02. The prior two 2015-dated five ounce coins featuring Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge in Delaware and Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina each opened with premiums of $14.38 per ounce. The two before honoring Kisatchie National Forest in Louisiana and Homestead National Monument in Nebraska opened at lower premiums of $13.67 and $13.80 per ounce. Last year’s coins came in at $15.71; $12.35; $11.60; $11.33; and $11.18.
Ordering and Past Coin Sales
2015-P Saratoga National Historical Park Five Ounce Silver Uncirculated Coins are available from the U.S. Mint via its online product page or by calling 1-800-USA-MINT (872-6468).
Sales can reach a maximum of 20,000 since 45,000 of the bullion version have already sold and the Mint set their combined mintage at 65,000.
Three of this year’s four previous uncirculated coins are still available. They currently have sales ranging from 16,219 to 20,112. The Blue Ridge Parkway coin sold out with last reported sales of 17,475.
The U.S. Mint in Philadelphia also produces five ounce bullion versions intended for investors. 2015 Saratoga Five Ounce Silver Bullion Coins went on sale Monday, Nov. 30, and 35,800 were claimed by the end of the day. Sales climbed another 9,200 on Tuesday, Dec. 1, and the Mint declared their sellout.
Both bullion and uncirculated coins share designs and specifications. In key differences, bullion coins:
- have a brilliant instead of matte finish,
- lack the Philadelphia Mint’s "P" mint mark, and
- do not ship in special U.S. Mint packaging.
The U.S. Mint reserves the selling of five ounce bullion coins to authorized distributors who buy them in bulk at $9.75 per coin plus silver spot and then resell them in smaller quantities. Bullion coins are normally available from precious metals and coin dealers for a few dollars per ounce over their melt value.