Uncirculated Frederick Douglass 5-ounce silver coins
- Published: Apr 28, 2017, 7 AM
The nation’s largest collector coins series — largest in terms of the physical size of the coins — will get its newest addition May 2 with the release of the Uncirculated 2017 Frederick Douglass National Historic Site 5-ounce silver coin.
The coin, denominated as a quarter dollar, is the latest issue in the America the Beautiful series of 5-ounce silver coins. It is a numismatic companion piece to the purely bullion version of the coin, which is already available. As of the April 12 U.S. Mint sales report, the Mint’s authorized purchasers bought 17,600 of the 5-ounce bullion coins.
The two versions share a common design and both are struck on the same press at the Philadelphia Mint, but there are differences between the two versions. The bullion version has what amounts to a standard Uncirculated finish, while the Uncirculated numismatic version has a finish that is applied post-striking. In addition, the numismatic version bears a P Mint mark on the obverse, while the bullion version does not.
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The reverse of what the U.S. Mint formally calls the 2017 America the Beautiful Five Ounce Silver Uncirculated Coin–Frederick Douglass National Historic Site depicts Frederick Douglass seated at a writing desk with his home in Washington, D.C., in the background. Inscriptions are FREDERICK DOUGLASS, DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, 2017, and E PLURIBUS UNUM. The obverse features what the Mint calls “a 1932 restored portrait of George Washington.”
Made of .999 fine silver, both types of America the Beautiful 5-ounce silver coins are 3 inches in diameter, making them the largest coins the U.S. Mint has ever struck. These Uncirculated coins are encapsulated and placed in a presentation case with a Certificate of Authenticity.
Pricing for the Uncirculated 2017 Frederick Douglass National Historic Site 5-ounce silver coin is set at $149.95. As with all products sold by the United States Mint containing precious metals, this price is subject to change in reaction to changes in the price of silver.
The current authorized combined mintage limit for both numismatic and bullion 2017 Frederick Douglass National Historic Site 5-ounce silver coins is 150,000 units. An announced maximum potential mintage limit of 25,000 coins is set for the Uncirculated version. However, based on demand, the United States Mint may mint and issue more than 125,000 of the bullion coins as long as the 150,000-coin limit is not exceeded (in effect, reducing the maximum mintage for the numismatic coin).
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If sales of the Uncirculated Frederick Douglass coin follow recent trends, it is unlikely that they will reach the 25,000-coin maximum. Since 2015, with the exception of the first coin offered for that year, sales of the Uncirculated America the Beautiful 5-ounce silver coins have remained below the 20,000-coin level, with many sales ending in the 17,000- to 19,000-coin range. Earlier releases often had sales totals of more than 20,000, with the first five coins, from 2010, reaching the 26,000 to 27,000 level. Sales of two 2014 coins topped 28,000 pieces each, the highest thus far for the series.
Orders for the Frederick Douglass coin will be accepted at the U.S. Min'ts website, and at 800-872-6468.
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