By Robert Taylor
This article is just a quick refresher for all of us out there who have children and grandchildren who are thinking about becoming a coin collector.
The U.S. Mint continues to make an astounding and varied amount of regular U.S. legal tender coins along with an array of souvenir coins & sets for the public. The obverse and reverse images have changed frequently especially in the nickel and the quarter. A new image for the $10.00 bill should also occur shortly. The $1.00 coins also have quite a few different images.
If you want to start your children & grandchildren collecting these coins, they remain very plentiful. However, you are wise to start your new collector out on somewhat older coins that can still be purchased very easily today. Take your interested collector to a local coin show. Each year there are several in Spartanburg, Greenville and Charlotte. At these free entrance shows will be displayed an enormous array of U.S. coins and paper currency most of which many of you have never seen before. The history behind these items is really fascinating. At these shows, some of the dealers even have a “buy one-get one free” box you can rummage through. You can obtain older coinage such as silver Mercury Dimes, Roosevelt Dimes, Washington Quarters and Walking Liberty Half Dollars. Fun for all in an afternoon of looking. In addition, there are older non-silver coins such as Indian Head Cents, Buffalo Nickels, Liberty Nickels, etc.
These are the coins you want to start a new collector out on. Coins with history behind them. In addition, the coin shows always have one dealer who sells 1000’s of different reference books plus coin supplies, albums, etc. Prices for these items are normally much better than you will find online at major supply houses.
Now, some questions I’m asked all the time:
“Will the copper penny be eliminated”
Answer—probably yes in the future. Canada eliminated their one cent coin several years ago and the process has gone very well.
“Why do they still make $1.00 coins since nobody seems to use them?”
Answer—always remember that one of the strongest lobby organizations in Washington is the metal lobby. They continue to press our congress representatives to make more coins (thus helping the metal producers) when in fact, I seriously question why vast amounts of coins are minted each year especially the $1.00 coin that has little use in commerce today. The government has storage facilities where countless millions of these unused coins from the 1970’s and 1980’s are now stored such as the ill-fated Susan B. Anthony Dollars and Eisenhower Dollars. Of course, it takes our tax dollars to provide for the adequate storage.
If you have questions regarding collecting coins, feel free to email me at: