Ray Hanania

Ray Hanania

Coin collectors celebrate Morgan silver dollar release 

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To celebrate the 100-year anniversary of the last issue of the Morgan silver dollar, the U.S. Mint announced it would re-mint the Morgan silver dollar beginning in 2021.

I am a big coin collector and my favorite coins are the Indian head pennies, buffalo nickels, Mercury dimes, the old 3 cent pieces, the half pennies, and the Liberty Standing quarters. 

The Liberty Standing quarters and the buffalo nickels share a major problem: the year dates on the coins were raised on a flat raised surface so they wore off quickly and probably about 70 percent of those coins out there either don’t have visible dates or barely have dates that make you guess.

When it comes to silver dollars, something we don’t see much of these days, my favorites have been the Walking Liberty silver dollar, which has been issued every year since 1986, and the now re-release of the Morgan silver dollar.

Those old coins bring back memories of my parents’ time, and none fuels those memories more than the Morgan silver dollar, when a dollar had real value.

In the 1950s and 1960s, a dollar was a lot of money. These days, it is nothing, mainly because of the greed of the corporations and the failure of our federal government to stem rampant inflation that is killing us.

The 1986 Walking Liberty silver dollar only cost $8 in 1986. Today, you can order it from the U.S. Mint at a cost of $76 each. It shows you how inflation has undermined our economy and our savings, reinforcing the notion that the only real long-term investment is property, your home.

The money you put in a bank seems to grow but inflation undercuts it. If you had $80,000 in your savings in 1986, you would need $760,000 to have the same dollar buying power and value.

But coin collecting, as I said, is more than about profiteering from the value of the coins. It is about your life. Coins represent a period in your life and they bring them back. 

Coin collecting has changed over the years from a fun hobby to a purely profit-making venture. Some coins like the Lincoln wheat penny can still be found in circulation, but you won’t find any buffalo nickels or even any of the silver dollars except those “ego-driven” gold-colored presidential dollars issued for each of our presidents since George Washington.

Really, those coins are worthless. What a waste, all to feed the already inflated egos of some of our more recent presidents.

Also, I hate those coins where the U.S. Mint put the dates and information on the thin side of the coins rather than on the face or back. They are hard to read and they wear down quickly. Dumb idea.

I have everyone one of them in all mints, but I throw them at the bottom of the pile.

I often stare at my buffalo nickel collection and reminisce how I got each one. Even if you don’t remember each one, you might remember a few and those memories are priceless, immune to the undermining effects of inflation.

I missed the release of the first Morgan silver dollar in 2021 but I will find some to complete the start of that collection and will have every one eventually, for as long as I am alive, of course.

The U.S. Mint did not issue a Morgan silver dollar for 2022, because of the lack of .999 silver to make them. They only resumed this year. You should buy one or two and you can do it by going online to the USMint.org to create an account and ensure that you have real quality Morgan silver dollars.

Do not waste your time responding to Facebook ads for old or new Morgan silver dollars. Those are made in China and despite the company names sounding “American,” they are not. Those coins are fakes.

Why Facebook doesn’t crack down on these ripoff companies that push garbage online is a mystery to me, but I assume it has to do with Mark Zukerberg’s greed at Meta, the new name for Facebook.

There is a good coin store in Bridgeview that I visit often to check out and buy coins, called A-R coins at 8529 S. Harlem Ave. It’s closed on Mondays but opens at 10 a.m. and when I go on assignment late, I always try to get there to fill out holes in my collections. It’s a great place to check out. The owner is very knowledgeable.

Coin collecting is one of our best hobbies. If your children are not involved in coin collecting, you should get them started. You would be doing them a favor.  

Ray Hanania is a former Chicago City Hall reporter and award-winning columnist. Visit his website at www.Hanania.com

2 Comments

  1. Bob on July 31, 2023 at 2:44 pm

    Amen



  2. Jose Quiambao on August 3, 2023 at 5:39 am

    Help me where to sell my coins



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