Skip to main content

Franklin Mint Served Island Counties

What ever happened to the Franklin Mint?

The Franklin Mint was founded in Wawa, Pa., in 1964 by Joseph Segel. The business minted legal tender coins for foreign countries during the 1970s and 1980s. Many of these were bullion proof or uncirculated sets. Many of their clients were island states, although Panama was a major client as well. The company is currently owned by Retail Ecommerce Ventures, offering coins, die cast vehicles, dolls, jewelry, medals, sculpture and other collectibles.

What is “aRMour” plating?

The British Royal Mint doesn’t like to talk about any of the newer technologies used in its current £1 coin. It is known that the plating gives the coins their color. “aRMour” is applied in one application, resulting in a single layer of an alloy on the coin’s surface. This layer is bonded to the core of the coin. For this reason, there is less chance of loss of the protective layer compared to the surface of the coin’s predecessor. The round pound was plated with multiple layers that could chip off through erosion.

I recently acquired a 20th anniversary of 9/11 silver round with a mintmark of a script “O” over script “M.” Is that the O over M Mexico City mintmark?

Mexico City has used the O over M mintmark for centuries; however/ the script “O” over “M” represents the Osborne Mint in Cincinnati. It is the oldest privately operated mint in the U.S. It specializes in silver rounds, copper rounds, ingots and bullets.

It seems like today a private mint needs to be striking coins, not medallions, for foreign countries to stay in business. Is the Osborne Mint involved in striking coins?

According to the Osborne Mint website, “Our custom minted coins, key tags and medallions are used as safety rewards, commemoratives, keepsakes, giveaways, premiums, challenge coins, Mardi Gras doubloons, political activist items, awards and more.”

Do people collect mintmarks such as one of each, or the first appearances of each mintmark?

There are many ways to collect mintmarked coins. These include assembling a worldwide collection, trying to obtain mintmarks for the first year of issues from that mint or collecting when the mintmark first appeared on coins of each denomination.

When did the U.S. Mint begin promoting its proof coins and sets?

During the earliest days of the U.S. Mint, the few collectors interested in proof coins could go to the Mint and have them produce these coins. Many times this might have been individual coins rather than a set. In 1858, the Mint began to advertise proof sets for sale to the general public, likely sensing an increase in the number of collectors.

E-mail inquiries only. Do not send letters in the mail. Send to Because of space limitations, we are unable to publish all questions.