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Morgan $1 once known as ‘Bland’

I understand at one time the Morgan silver dollar was referred to as a Bland dollar. Where did this come from?


The name is derived from the Bland-Allison Act, through which the U.S. Treasury was required to purchase and strike between $2 million and $4 million value in silver at market value into dollar coins monthly. Western silver mine owners had lobbied to restore “free silver” instead, through which the Mint would have been required to accept all silver bullion presented to it, striking this silver into dollar face value coins regardless of the market price of the metal. The price of silver was depressed at the time.

What are the characteristics of the 1887 Donkey Tail silver dollar variety?

There is a lump of metal appearing at the base of the D in DOLLAR on the reverse. A jagged line that resembles a crack may appear under the inscription as well. The variety was caused by a die break, a die break being a broken die that was still in service when the coin was struck.

What was the reason the legal tender status of the U.S. Trade dollar was revoked?

Prior to the Bland-Allison Act anyone could bring their bullion to the U.S. Mint to have it struck into coins for a nominal fee. The weight and the face value of our silver dollar didn’t change regardless of the spot price of the metal. If the price of silver plummeted and you could still have your bullion struck into dollar denomination coins, you made money (literally). The legal tender status of the Trade dollar was revoked in 1876 to prevent bullion producers from making such a profit.

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This article was originally printed in Numismatic News. >> Subscribe today.

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