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Longstrider's Blog

03 Oct 2017

A CONTROVERSIAL SILVER COMMEMORATIVE COIN

Coins | Longstrider

My controversial coin is a 1892 silver Columbian Exposition Silver Half Dollar. It never used to be controversial but it seems to be now. I won't get into politics. This isn't the place. Let's just say that as a American-Italian I am not to happy that most Columbus Days festivals are now called Indigenous Peoples Day, as well as the parades. Back to the coin. This coin is the first commemorative coin issued by The United States of America. They were issued to commemorate the Worlds Columbian Exposition held in Chicago. This Expo was to celebrate 400 years since Columbus' finding of the New World. Coined in 1892 some were also made in 1893. They were sold at the Expo for $1.00 as a souvenir and to help cover the cost of the Expo. This coin has become the most common early commemorative coin. As you can see in the photos, mine has great toning on the obverse, that my photos don't show properly, and wear toning on the reverse. Most were held and not spent but it appears this one was spent. Why?? Maybe the original owner needed money so bad he/she spent a coin that cost one dollar to get fifty cents and it went on from there. The specs on this coin are that the obverse designer was Charles E. Barber. The reverse was designed by George T. Morgan. This is noteworthy as they were, reportedly, arch enemies at the mint. It has a diameter of 30.6 mm and weighs 12.5 grams of 90% silver and has a reeded edge. There was a total mintage of 950,000. I hope you enjoyed the blog and photos. I look forward to your "Non-Political" comments, please. Thanks for looking!

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