US Mint & US Bullion Coins

The US Mint

The US Mint and its satellite branches produce all of the Gold, Silver and Platinum, American Eagle US bullion coins. 

To provide maximum availability for the public, the United States Mint distributes US Bullion coins through a network of wholesalers, brokerage companies, precious metal firms, coin dealers, and participating banks through a network known as the "Authorized Purchasers."

The US Mint does not sell any bullion coins directly through their website.

us mint

The United States Mint also produces all coins for circulation and Precious Metals Numismatic Coins. 

For instance, in 2010, the U.S. Mint produced a total of 28 billion coins.

You can purchase Numismatic & Circulated Coins directly through the U.S. Mint's Website here.

The History of the US Mint 

First Director of the US Mint

first mint directorThe First Director of the United States Mint

After the U.S. Constitution was ratified, the Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton prepared plans for a National Mint.

On April 2, of 1792, Congress passed The Coinage Act.

President George Washington appointed David Rittenhouse, who was the former treasurer of Pennsylvania, to be the first Director of the United States Mint.  

His annual salary was $2000.00.

David Rittenhouse was also a celebrated astronomer and philosopher. 

His achievements readily place him in the same distinguished class as Benjamin Franklin.

Rittenhouse believed that a coin’s design was a piece of artwork.

A year after Rittenhouse was appointed, the first US coins were minted.  

Silver “half dimes” were the first official United States coinage struck by the mint, it is rumored that the silver came from George and Martha Washington’s very own silverware.

Under Rittenhouse, in March of 1793, the US Mint produced its first circulated coins, 11,178 copper cents. 

David Rittenhouse resigned from the Mint on June 30, 1795, due to poor health, he died a year later on June 26, 1796.  In 1871, Congress approved a commemorative medal in his honor.

In 2012, one of these early copper coins sold at auction for 1.38 million, see the article here: 1793 penny fetches $1.38M at U.S. auction - USA TODAY

"Ye Olde Mint"

The Coinage Act, created the U.S. Mint and authorized construction of
the first United States Mint to be built in Philadelphia, PA., which
at the time was the nation’s capital.

Shortly after David Rittenhouse’s appointment as Director of the U.S. Mint, on July 18, 1792, he purchased two lots of land at Seventh Street and 631 Filbert Street for $4,266.66, in Philadelphia.

The construction of the first U.S. Mint began on July 31, 1792, by
September, of that same year, the first building was ready for the installation of its smelting furnace.

The smelt house was the first government building erected by the
United States.

ye olde mint"Ye Olde Mint" (1792 - 1833)

A three-story brick structure was built a few months later; it bore
the name "Ye Olde Mint," and faced Seventh Street.  (Pictured left)

It contained basement vaults where gold, silver and copper were stored, with pressed coins.

The Ye Olde Mint produced coins at this location for more than 20 years. 

Unfortunately in 1816, there was a fire at the Mint destroying the smelter house and the mill house.

The mill house, burned to the ground, but it was replaced with a
large brick building; it included a new powerful steam engine in the basement to run the coin pressing machinery, on the floor above.

The smelting house was not rebuilt and was moved to a second Philadelphia location.

In 1833, all mint operations were moved to the second Philadelphia mint and the lots, that the first U.S. Mint stood upon, were sold.

The "Ye Olde Mint" building was demolished a few years after the photo above was taken, in 1908.

In comparison of the production capacity; the modern Philadelphia Mint can currently strike as many as one million coins in a half an hour, whereas it would have taken the “Ye Olde Mint” three years to produce the same amount of coins.

Designers & Engravers

us coins designers engravers

The initials found on U.S. minted coinage are those of the Designer and the Engraver, of the coin. 

The Designer's initials can be found on the right side of the coin and the Engraver's initials will be found on the left side.

(Note :  All of the coins on the guide are narrated in the first person point of view; click this link for an explanation.)

If the coin has the same designer and engraver, the initials will be on the left side of the coin; these initials will always be found on the lower half of the coin.

This procedure is used for most modern US coins.  However, coins that use a design from a coin created before this practice was commonplace, the initials of the designer or engraver can be found somewhere in the lower half of the coin. (Ex: US Gold Buffalo bullion coin)

United States Numismatic and Circulated coins also display the designers and engravers initials. 

Although on circulated coins the initials are sometimes very hard to see, so once in a while, you may need a magnifying glass to locate them.

US Bullion Coin Values

The "Face Value" of a bullion coin, does not represent the "Real Value" of a precious metal bullion coin.

US Bullion Coins are bought and sold based on the current market spot price of gold, silver or platinum, plus a small premium to cover minting, handling, distribution, and marketing costs. 

Gold, Silver and Platinum Spot Price Charts are located on every one of the bullion coin pages below.

US Bullion Coins

Gold Bullion Coins

1 oz american eagle gold

1oz. American Eagle Gold Bullion Coins - $50 Face Value

1/2 oz. American Eagle Gold Bullion Coins - $25 Face Value

1/4 oz. American Eagle Gold Bullion Coins - $10 Face Value

1/10th oz. American Eagle Gold Bullion Coins - $5 Face Value

1oz gold buffalo

1oz. American Buffalo Gold Bullion Coins - $50 Face Value

Silver Bullion Coins

amer eagle silver

1oz. American Eagle Silver Bullion Coins - $1 Face Value

5oz america the beautiful silver

5oz. America the Beautiful Silver Bullion Coins - $0.25 Face Value

Platinum Bullion Coins

one oz platinum

1oz. American Eagle Platinum Bullion Coins - $100 Face Value

1/2oz. American Eagle Platinum Bullion Coins - $50 Face Value

1/4oz. American Eagle Platinum Bullion Coins - $25 Face value

1/10th oz. American Eagle Platinum Bullion Coins - $10 Face Value


The US Mint

U.S.A. Philadelphia

Book (1909) - "YE OLDE MINT" by Frank H. Stewart Electric Co.

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