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Community Voice Responses (06/19/12)

From the May 25 Numismatic News E-Newsletter: The Mint is striking “S” mint circulation quality quarters. Should there be other “S” coins? Here are some answers sent from our e-newsletter readers to Editor Dave Harper.
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From the May 25 Numismatic News E-Newsletter: The Mint is striking “S” mint circulation quality quarters. Should there be other “S” coins? Here are some answers sent from our e-newsletter readers to Editor Dave Harper.

I don’t know if there should be other “S” minted circulation quality coins. There’s probably not a real need for them. I will say that it would be great to find modern “S” minted coins in change along side the “D” and “P” coins.
Bryan New
Columbia, Ky.

Sounds good to me if the additional volume is necessary. Just to have another coin with an “S” mintmark doesn’t make a lot of sense.
Grifff Carnes
Kerrville, Texas

The “S” mintmark could be done on a limited basis in order to have a premium value as a collectable.
I have expressed an opinion to abolish the cent from circulation. This venue can still be a viable option for those who wish to collect this denomination. Limited mintage would shave some costs in regards to the shipping aspect.
Gary Kess
Escalon, Calif.

I thoroughly enjoy coin collecting but I don’t feel that the “S” mintmark is original enough to merit a continuation of other “S” coins.
In view of the San Francisco Mint’s anniversary, the 2012 quarter set would be a nice addition, but anything after that will be a little redundant.
As far as the U.S. Mint goes, what seems to be missing from its releases is the letter “S” for “Special.” A special treat every now and then would suffice. Shove it down our throats, and coin collecting will become just another novelty.
Mercury R. Williams
Seattle, Wash.

The Mint has found out that as collectors, we have no choice but to pay premiums to keep our collections as up to date as possible. I would be surprised if it had any motive other than greed. So in this case, greed is what motivates the Mint.
If it were otherwise, then the Mint would allow banks, just like other quarter programs in the past, to order coins so the good citizens of this land can get a quarter, or any other non-distributed coin, at face value. What a concept! Face value coins!
Now, the folders that we do with our children are soon to be out of date since there are no slots for the “S” quarters. So now we have to get new ones.
Then, since I have only found a Mt. Hood quarter so far in circulation, maybe I will start to pass on these modern marvels, get serious, and just collect pre-1964 coins and let it rest. After all, one cannot chase all of the new coins from the mint anymore. It is getting cost prohibitive to keep up with just the low end products.
If history is any indicator, a mint set from 30 years ago sells for less than it did when introduced. So maybe it would be wiser to wait it out, let the Mint and its special buyers invest in the products, and pick it up in junk boxes in 10 years or so.
Take a look at the silver eagle anniversary sets. I do believe that they have started to drop from the prices of five months ago.
Wake up, let the mint know we love coins, but do not want to be held hostage to corporate greed with our own tax money.
Alan Hepler
Laytonsville, Md.

As a collector, I would like to see the “S” mintmark reinstated on coins. However, I think the government administrators should evaluate the costs and make the decision based on economics.
Larry Violett
Lodi, Calif.

I would like to see that the “S” mintmark remain for collectors only.
I have been a collector of the “S” mintmark for years and I have always paid a special price to receive them from the U.S.Mint.
To now see them in general circulation will just take away the desire to obtain those particular coins. It takes away from the collector the special ownership of being able to collect something that is not in general circulation.
I will be thinking twice about collecting future coins.
Stephen Bonelli
Webster, N.Y.

Will these quarters appear in the 2012 mint uncirculated sets? Technically, aren’t all circulating coins supposed to be in the mint sets?
I was wondering because there was no mention of them being sold in that fashion – just in rolls, bags, etc. – and it sounds like they anticipate these quarters to circulate.
Ross MacCallum
Dumfries, Va.

Editor’s note: The “S” quarters will not be part of the uncirculated coin set.

It appears that the primary mission of the U.S. Mint is to rip off the collectors. Whatever they are smoking, I want some.
“S” mintmark circulation quarters are not circulated if they are only obtainable by purchase from the Mint. The federal reserve is incapable of delivering the National Park quarters to the banks for collectors. This fiasco will be no different. This incompetency did not happen with the Clinton and Bush administrations.
The “S” mint quarters, if coined, should be placed in the yearly uncirculated sets instead of sold separately. It is asinine to coin the “S” circulation quarters for the years 2012 onward without including years 2009, 2010, and 2011 because collectors will not have a complete National Park series.
Did you read that, U.S. Mint? You can now recoin and include the “S” circulated quarters in 2009 - 2011 year sets, and resell the sets at an enormous markup, of course. If that is not practical, then the Mint should coin the “S” quarters for those three years and sell them to the public.
Since the Mint has opened Pandora’s box, we need the “S” mint uncirculated nickels, pennies, half dollars, Sacagewea, and Presidential dollars included in the yearly uncirculated set as well. I suggest the Mint coin a series of Pocahontas dollars in the near future to further separate the collector’s money from his wallet.
The mint should also coin “D” and “O” silver Eagles in proof, reverse proof, and uncirculated versions each year. I also think $50 gold coins of Buffalo and Saint-Gauden’s proof that are uncirculated should have the Denver and New Orleans’ mintmarks. The Mint should stick it to us for being so damn stupid to buy their product.
As you can see, I do not have any favorable comments about the new scheme the U.S. Mint has to separate us from our hard-earned cash. I think it was J.P. Barnum that said, “There’s a sucker born every minute.”
Marco Ramius
El Paso, Texas

If they wanted to put an “S” mintmark on quarters, they should have done it at the beginning of the ATB series, not right in the middle of the set. All the folders and albums are already made and many of the people collecting these quarters will not have a place to put them.
Since it could either be a one year program or an ongoing series, even the coin supplies companies will have to wait to decide what to do.
I assume that, at some point during 2012, the Mint will be coming out with a five-coin set where a collector will only have to purchase one of each quarter and pay the Mint’s shipping cost one time, but what about the collectors who want to purchase rolls? Will we have to pay shipping five different times to obtain these rolls?
I see on the Mint’s website that the first quarter, El Yunque from Puerto Rico, will be on sale on June 21. Why didn’t the Mint make rolls for all five designs available to collectors at one time to keep our collector costs lower?
I realize this program is already approved and initiated and there is nothing we can do about 2012. My vote is to keep it only for one year because it wouldn’t be fair to the first three years’ quarters who won’t get an “S” mintmark.
Ken Olson
Grand Rapids, Minn.

I think it would be great to see the San Francisco Mint start minting coins like the other mints. My vote is to also include the West Point Mint. I would seek them all.
Phil Moulder
Wetumpka, Ala.

Yeah! Way to go for the “S”! That’s excitement for the collectors! Way to go! It’s almost like the old days. “S”s on cents, nickels, dimes, quarters, halves! Sure, on dollars too!
Hopefully that’ll mean an “S” on uncirculated Presidential dollars too. With the new regulations, they are only available in rolls for the collectors, except for the annual sets, right? That’s since they’ve ceased minting Presidential dollars for general circulation. On the uncirculated silver American Eagles too.
The proofs may come from West Point. The last “S” mintmarks were on the Sacagawea and Presidential proof dollars and late date uncirculated silver American Eagles. Wow, what a potpourri!
Kenyon Miers
Esperance, N.Y.

Collectors basically collect two sorts of coins. The first are coins a mint makes without regard to the needs or desires of collectors. These coins are meant to satisfy the commercial and other needs of the Mint’s country for commerce, political or other symbolism such as commemoratives, etc.
Coins in the second category are products like proof sets and double thick proofs that are created to make money by selling them to collectors.
The heart and reason for being of the numismatic hobby has for centuries been collecting whatever comes along in the first category above. The second category is fun, but is basically collecting souvenir collectibles for their artistic appearance or whatever.
While the considerations for the answer to the question of whether there should be more “S” mint coins are slightly different for the two categories, the answer is the same. Collectors’ desires don’t and should not affect the form, including mintmarks, of the first category. For the second category, mintmarks should follow similar coins made for commercial use in trade, and there should not be a mintmark that is not first used for non-numismatic purposes.
R. W. Barker
Midland, Mich.

All coins manufactured should be mintmarked. The silver Eagles made in San Francisco should all be mintmarked. An “S” or “W” marked slab doesn’t impress me.
Donald Cantrell
Address withheld

First, with only 1.4 million of each of the five quarters minted with the “S” mintmark, I’m sure they will be another quick sell-out (dealers and investors as well as ordinary collectors) no matter what the premiums the Mint charges for them.
Second, get ready for many complaints from all of the collectors who purchased albums and folders for the series that do not contain a space for any quarters other than “P” and “D.”
Who knows, maybe there will be special “W” ATB quarters in the future.
Mike Metcalf
Address withheld

Only with a mintmark!! If no mintmark is placed on S.F. coins, who will care, or buy? Not I. One man’s opinion.
Lionel Ducote
Address witheld

Why shouldn’t there be? What was wrong and why are they tampering with the nearly 250 year old tradition in the U.S. of putting mintmarks of where the coins were minted?
At various times in our history mints have come and gone. “CC”, “D” (as in “Dahlonega”), “O”, and “C”, so came the “W.” Even “P” during World War II (for some reason.) It would be good if the Mint would be consistent and follow tradition.
Gary Makowski
Address withheld