Value of Morgan Dollars
When you ask American's to tell you one silver dollar coin, to much surprise, the Morgan Silver Dollar gets mentioned quite a bit. It's a strange phenomenon especially when you consider the fact that these coins started mintage in 1878. At one hundred thirty three years old, these silver dollars are still recognized more than not. There's good reason for it too, as the Morgan Silver Dollar has a very unique history. Their rarity and metal composition also add great appeal to this historical coin. Covered in this article are the history, melt and numismatic value of Morgan Dollars.
History of the Morgan Dollar:
- The Morgan Silver Dollar was first released into circulation in 1878 under the authorization of the Bland-Allison Act of February 28, 1878. These new silver dollars were the first to appear in circulation since 1873 when the last Liberty Seated Silver Dollar was minted. Following the guidelines set forth by the Act of January 1837, the Morgan Dollar was composed of a silver fineness of .900 and weighed in at 412.5 grains. In modern terms, the Morgan dollar is 90% silver and weighs 26.73 grams.
- The designer of the Morgan Dollar is George T. Morgan. Morgan at one point in his life was a student of the Royal Mint in London. The obverse of the coin features a portrait of Liberty with flowing hair and a crown. On the reverse, a perched eagle with spread wings can be observed.
- The Morgan Dollar was minted yearly from 1878-1904. From 1905-1920, the production of silver dollars was cancelled due to low public demand and bullion supplies running low.
- After 15 years without mintage of any silver dollars, the United States Mint produced over 85 million Morgan Dollars in 1921. Although silver dollars were minted until 1935, the Morgan Design ceased in late 1921. The design was replaced with the Peace Dollar.
- War efforts of the early 20th century left Britain with very low supplies of Silver. In order to help our oversea allies, the United States collected ant melted a total of 270,232,722 Morgan Silver Dollars. They were sold as bulk bullion. The number of coins melted represented 47% of all Morgan Dollars ever minted.
Composition and Morgan dollar Melt Value:
Weight - 26.73 Grams
Metal Composition - 90% Silver, 10% Copper
Melt Value - $33.35 Per Coin.
Value of Morgan Dollars
After exploring the history of the Morgan Silver Dollar, it should be clear as to why these coins are so well known. With almost half of the total mintage of Morgan Dollars melted and sold, the collector’s value for surviving specimens has, and most likely always will remain at premium. The rarity of some years is so great that Morgan Dollars in Mint State condition have sold for over a half million dollars. Even if you’re coin is in terrible condition or not a key date, the silver value is over $30 per coin. Below is a value list for key and semi key date Morgan dollars.
Morgan Dollars were minted at five different mints. The mintmark can be found below the wreath on the reverse of the coin.
- No Mintmark - Philadelphia Mint
- CC - Carson City Mint
- O - New Orleans Mint
- S - San Francisco Mint
- D - Denver Mint (Only in 1921)
Did You Know?
When it comes to the actual value of your Morgan Silver Dollar, condition means everything. Even common date Morgan Dollars can be worth thousands, as long as they grade high Almost Uncirculated or Mint State. If you're unsure how to tell the condition of your coin, its good thing to familiarize yourself with the Coin Grading Scale.
Key Date Morgan Silver Dollars:
- · 1881CC - Valued at $100-1,000
- · 1885CC - Valued at $200-2,000
- · 1889CC - Valued at $200-300,000
- · 1893CC - Valued at $75-50,000
- · 1893S - Valued at $1,100-400,000
- · 1893O - Valued at $75-200,000
- · 1894 - Valued at $225-30,000+
- · 1895 - Special Proof like coins. Valued at $25,000-50,000
- · 1895O - Valued at $250-200,000+
- ·1895S - Valued at $150-20,000
Semi Key Date Morgan Silver Dollars:
- · 1878CC - Valued at $40-2,000+
- · 1879CC - Regular Mintmark. Valued at $35-17,000
- · 1879CC - Muddled Mintmark. Valued at $35-34,000
- · 1880CC - Valued at $50-1,250+
- · 1882CC - Valued at $35-550
- · 1883CC - Valued at $35-500
- · 1884CC - Valued at $50-500
- · 1888S - Valued at $25-3,450
- · 1890CC - Valued at $35-5,000+
- · 1891CC - Valued at $30-5,000+
- · 1892CC - Valued at $40-9,000+
- · 1892S - Valued at $25-145,000
- · 1894O - Valued at $25-48,000
- · 1894S - Valued at $35-5,500+
- · 1899 - Valued at $40-550
- · 1901 - Valued at $25-200,000+
- · 1901S - Valued at $25-3,500+
- · 1902S - Valued at $35-3,000
- · 1903S - Valued at $25-6,500+
- · 1904S - Valued at $35-6,300+
Hopefully by reading through the information presented, you have a better understanding of the value of Morgan Dollars and the history that supports that value. If you have one of these coins, you'll at least know that you have one up on me. Good luck and don't stop collecting!
Looking for More US Silver Coins?
- Value of Peace Dollars
- Barber Half Dollar Value
- Value of Seated Liberty Half Dollars
- Value of Walking Liberty Half Dollar
- Value of Franklin Half Dollars
- Value of Kennedy Half Dollars
Vicente martinez on February 15, 2018:
I'm interested in selling my silver dollars, I have a Morgan 1881 and others much older. All in very good condition any body interested?
Zach (author) from Colorado on September 05, 2011:
PC- Thanks for the feedback. The Morgan Dollar is a stunning coin that just screams to be collected. The early coins of the United States have quite an influence from Britain. We really didn't break away from these designs until the President's starting showing up on our coins in the 1900's.
Vince Warner from Hailsham, England on September 03, 2011:
I love the Morgan Dollar. I bought one a few years ago and was amazed how reasonably priced they are considering their age.
As an Englishman I mainly collect British coins, but this coin is the one that got me started on American coinage.
Great hub. I enjoyed reading it.
Zach (author) from Colorado on September 03, 2011:
The chances of finding one of the Morgan Dollars in circulation is none. I would imagine that all of these are stored away. They are all worth more their face value because they are made from 90% Silver. The minimum value for these coins go up and down a little with silver prices, but lately they've stayed around $30 per coin.
Nspeel from Myrtle Beach on September 03, 2011:
What are the odds of finding one of these or any coin in circulation worth more than its face value.