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Coin Collecting – Our Top Five

Collecting coins is a fun hobby, and estate sales in Gig Harbor, Tacoma, and Olympia are some of the perfect places to find older and rare coins. So, whether you’re just getting started or you’ve been collecting for a while, here are some of our top favorite coins to spot at estate sales.

1. 50 State Quarters

The US Mint began minting these modern quarters in 1999, these commemorative coin series were set to honor each of the 50 states and were rolled out in its entirety by 2009. What makes these coins unique is that your collection is entirely up to you. You can collect the entire set, collect coins from states you visited, or states you’ve lived. These coins are one of the most accessible and easiest ways to start your coin collection.

Fun fact. The first state released was Delaware and Hawaii was the last to be released in October of 2008. In 2009, the US Mint began to release quarters for the District of Columbia along with the territories of Puerto Rico, American Samoa, Guam, The US Virgin Islands, and the Northern Marian Islands.

2. Morgan Dollar

Morgan Dollars were common Silver Dollars circulated between 1887 to 1904. This coin depicts an image of a bald eagle with outstretched wings on the reverse and a left-facing Liberty wearing a Phrygian cap on the face. The Morgan Dollar was minted from 1878 to 1904, and again in 1921, and is the most collected U.S. coin of all time.

These coins mark an interesting time in history. In 1878, the United States Congress passed the Bland-Allison Act which required the U.S. government to purchase large quantities of silver and turn it into silver dollars. Engraver George T. Morgan initially created this design to be used on a half-dollar. It was eventually modified and adapted for the silver dollar beginning in 1878. The United States Mint was consumed entirely by producing silver dollars to fulfill the requirements of the Bland-Allison Act.

3. Saint-Gaudens Double Eagle

Specifically, the 1907 and 1933 Saint-Gaudens Double Eagle coins. The 1907 Saint-Gaudens Double Eagle was designed by the famous sculptor Augustus Saint-Gaudens. This coin features Lady Liberty on the face, with the US Capitol building in the background and an eagle on the reverse side. Only 12,367 coins were minted, and they are highly sought after by collectors.

The 1933 Double Eagles were never officially released due to the gold standard being abolished during the Great Depression. However, a few of these coins were smuggled out of the mint and found their way into the hands of collectors.

4. The Washington Quarter

First produced in 1932, the Washington Quarter was intended to be a one-year commemorative coin to mark the 200th anniversary of George Washington's birth. However, due to the Great Depression, no Washington quarters were produced until 1933. However, the issue proved to be so popular that the design was permanently adopted in 1934 and is still in use to this date.

5. The 1937 Three-Legged Buffalo Nickel

This coin is valuable due to an error. Because it was time-consuming and costly to produce coin dies, many were polished or ground to extend their die life. The Tree-Legged Buffalo nickel was the result of an overzealous mint employee who ground the surface of the die to the point where it removed the details for the front leg of the Buffalo on the reverse of the coin.

If you are looking to add one to your collection know that it is easy for someone to take a regular Buffalo Nickel and remove the front leg. Look for scrapes or polishing marks where the leg used to be. If it looks like the leg has been removed, avoid purchasing it.

Coin collecting is for both the novice and the experienced. If you are ready to start or want to add to your collection, check out our upcoming estate sales. We can’t wait to see you!


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