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Community Voice Responses (June 13, 2017)

From the May 19 Numismatic News E-Newsletter:


Should the ‘P’ mintmark stay permanently on all Philadelphia cents?

Here are some answers sent from our e-newsletter readers to Editor Dave Harper.

Yes. I’ve been collecting from the late ’60s and I always thought it was a bit odd that coins from Philadelphia didn’t have a mintmark, while all other mints do.

But in one sense the mintmark has, at times, sort of intruded in the overall design of the coin, making the coins minted at Philadelphia a pure representation of what the designer intended.

It’s as if the designer really wasn’t thinking of the mintmark placement when the design was created.

Then, when the coin was put into production, the other mints had to add the mintmark somewhere. Sometimes under the date, or to the side of a building, under a tail or between some branches. Sometimes on the front and other times on the back.

If the “P” was standardized for all coins minted at Philadelphia, I think mintmarks as a whole would be considered during the design process and would be better integrated into the overall design of all our coinage.

Or – just remove all mintmarks from all coins. Of course that would probably drive some collectors crazy.

Just my 2 cents (both from Philly) on the subject.

Ken Freeze
Martinez, Calif.

No because it would make this year’s less valuable.

William Johnston
San Antonio, Texas

I don’t see any reason to remove it from current coins.

Thomas Niemiera
Baltimore, Md.

Yes, the “P” mintmark should stay permanently on pennies made at the Philadelphia mint. All coins made at any U.S. mint should have a mintmark on them.

It used to be that no mintmark meant the coin was made in Philadelphia. Why did the FOIA need to be invoked to get the U.S. Mint to release information on where silver Eagles were minted? So now it takes a service like PCGS to tell us a silver Eagle came from the San Francisco mint, even though the coin bears no mintmark?

Tom Demaree
Fridley, Minn.

I picked a shiny new 2017-P cent out of transaction change a couple of days ago and took a glance and a pondered at the mintmark. I like it very much, but only in the sense of why it was added on this 225th anniversary year of the U.S. Mint. I favor the Mint dropping the “P” mintmark next year and thereafter to keep the milestone significance of the 2017 issues.

Jack Schadegg
Silver Spring, Md.

I believe that nearly every single coin collector knows that no mintmark signifies Philly. Right. It is just more dumbing down of America to be forced to now put a “P” on coins so the general public, who does not care, is aware of where their coin was minted. No mintmark on Philadelphia-minted coins. Let’s solve some of our real problems in America, if anyone is listening.

Dwayne Helmuth
Temecula, Ca.

No. It costs the die makers more to produce and is unnecessary. I also like the idea that 2017 is a “one of a kind” for the cent. It makes this lowly cent something “special.”

Bernie Malis
Address withheld

Absolutely not! This will make the 2017-P more desirable.

David Light
Address withheld

The Philly Mint should stick to its original plan and make its mintmarked cents a one-time-good-deal. These coins are special and should remain so. To make the “P” cent permanent would drag it down to the realm of the commonplace.

Bob Fritsch
Nashua, N.H.

Yes, it should stay so we can look for errors and double mint marks.

Richard Stevenson
Address withheld

Perhaps it is time to say goodbye to the mintmark on the cents. It would be common sense to do so. The cents will not be eliminated from circulation. This being said, save a bit on minting. As said before, the cent should be eliminated from circulation only. This will save thousands on our tax dollars.

Gary Kess
Berkel en Rodenrijs, Netherlands

No, I would not want the “P” mintmark on all future cents. The “P” mintmark on the 2017 cent makes it special.

Name withheld

I know that both Denver and San Francisco coins have always had their own mintmarks, but I never did understand why Philadelphia didn’t. West Point started with a mintmark.

I believe that, after 225 years, Philadelphia should be distinguished by having its own mintmark as well.

Bob D. Allen
Address withheld

I wish they would remove it. As an old guy, I think I’m going to have a real problem differentiating the P from the D.

Scott Prior
Adress withheld

Keep “P” on the cent.

Cecil Starcher
Address withheld

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

More Collecting Resources

• The Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1601-1700 is your guide to images, prices and information on coins from so long ago.

• Order the Standard Catalog of World Paper Money, General Issues to learn about circulating paper money from 14th century China to the mid 20th century.