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Franklin silver ingots
Q: I have a collection of 70 Franklin Mint Bicentennial silver ingots commemorating the 200th anniversary of the American Revolution. I am trying to determine the value of these ingots.
Many years ago, I spoke with someone at the Franklin Mint who told me that each ingot contains 885 grains of silver. I also learned that a little over 19,000 sets were minted originally. Whether they all sold or not wasn’t revealed.
If the ingots have any intrinsic value today I would imagine that it would be largely due to the silver content as opposed to numismatic value.
Do you have any knowledge or information about the collection that would help me to establish its current market value?
Edward Wallon; address withheld
According to The Dealer’s Guide to Franklin Mint Issues, the reader owns what was a series of 70 Bicentennial-themed sterling silver (.925 fine) ingots, each packaged in a postmarked cachet, or envelope, with a total mintage of 19,312. These figures adhere closely to the numbers Mr. Wallon mentions. The ingots were originally issued from 1973 to 1981 at an issue price of $19.50 each.
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These were sold via subscription. A person would subscribe, then as each one was issued, it would be addressed and affixed with a postmark based on the date of the ingot’s historical significance. For example, the cachet containing the ingot commemorating the signing of the Declaration of Independence was postmarked July 4, 1976 (as illustrated above).