1976 Eisenhower Dollar
In 1975, the United States began minting Eisenhower dollars with the dual dates 1776-1976, which mark the occasion of the United States bicentennial. The 200th birthday of our nation’s founding sparked gala ceremonies all around the United States on July 4, 1976, and the lead-up to the special birthday prompted the United States to memorialize the event on the dollar coin, which bore a special design featuring the moon superimposed by the Liberty Bell.
There were two styles of the bicentennial dollar reverse; these are called Type I and Type II dollars. Type I dollars exhibit thick, sans-serif lettering, while the Type II pieces show more refined, serif-style letters. The copper-nickel clad dollar coins feature both styles, but the 40 percent 1976 dollars were minted and released only with the Type I design, which was struck in 1975.
11,000,000 uncirculated 1976-S 40 percent silver dollars were minted while 4,000,000 proof versions of the 1776-1976 S silver dollar were produced. In general, when silver content is worth around $20 per ounce, uncirculated 40 percent silver bicentennial dollars cost around $14 and proofs carry a $20 price tag.
While you can buy silver bicentennial dollars individually, they are available in special, 3-piece uncirculated and proof sets that were assembled by the United States Mint. These sets include the 1776-1976 quarter and half dollar, which also display special bicentennial-themed designs.Average Sale: $26.00
Other Years From This Coin Series
Are Bicentennial Eisenhower dollars worth anything?
1976 Eisenhower Dollar Clad bicentennial dollars in Mint State are much rarer in high grades than Proof clad coins that are common through PF69. Except for 1976 Type 1 that is worth $1,500 in MS66, most of the others are $55 in that grade, and all are rare in MS67 – especially the 1976-D Type 1, which is worth $11,500.
Where is the mint mark on a 1776-1976 silver dollar?
|Years of minting||1971–1978. Coins struck in 1975 and 1976 bear double date “1776–1976”|
|Mint marks||D, S. Located on the obverse beneath Eisenhower’s bust. Mint mark omitted on Philadelphia Mint issues.|
|Design||Dwight D. Eisenhower|
How much is a bicentennial dollar worth today?
In general, when silver content is worth around $20 per ounce, uncirculated 40 percent silver bicentennial dollars cost around $14 and proofs carry a $20 price tag.
Which Eisenhower dollars are worth money?
The 1971-S you want to look for what’s called the “Peg Leg” (a small tails extends off the R in LIBERTY) and those can sell for $50 in MS64. In 1972 you want look for the Type 2 Earth and the Type 3, but the Type 2 is the most valuable variety and can be worth over $1,000 in MS65.
How much is a 1776 to 1976 bicentennial quarter worth?
The standard 1776-1976 clad quarters in circulated condition are only worth their face value of $0.25. These coins only sell for a premium in uncirculated condition. The 1776-1976 quarter with no mint mark and the 1776-1976 D quarter are each worth around $1.25 in uncirculated condition with an MS 63 grade.
How do I know if my bicentennial quarter is worth money?
If you find circulated 1776-1976 quarters either with no mintmark (those were made in Philadelphia) or the “D” (Denver) mintmark in pocket change, they’re worth face value – 25 cents. If you find a 1776-1976 quarter with an “S” (San Francisco) mintmark, it’s either a proof specimen or a 40% silver Bicentennial quarter.
How can you tell if a bicentennial quarter is silver?
The simplest method to find out if your quarter is silver is to check the date. It will appear on the front (obverse) of the coin. Any quarter with a date earlier than 1965 will be silver. You can also check the edge (the “side”) of the coin.
Is there Silver in a bicentennial quarter?
And this 1776-1976 Bicentennial quarter isn’t just any quarter… it’s a Proof from San Francisco created especially for collectors. Instead of the usual copper-nickel clad, this quarter was minted in 40% silver.
Will a magnet stick to silver?
“Silver is not noticeably magnetic, and exhibits only weak magnetic effects unlike iron, nickel, cobalt, and the like,” says Martin. “If your magnet sticks strongly to the piece, it has a ferromagnetic core and is not silver.” Fake silver or silver-plated items are generally made of other metals.
Why is the 1922 silver dollar worth so much?
The larger the coin is, the more pressure that must be used to strike it. Mint workers at the Philadelphia mint in 1922 failed to recognize a deteriorating die. The crack in the die on the reverse side resulted in a blob of metal below the eagle and above the word DOLLAR.
Eisenhower Dollar Values and Prices
Eisenhower Dollars are the last of the big and bold coins produced by the United States Mint for circulation. These coins never circulated widely in most of the United States. However, some were used in the casinos on the west coast of the United States. They were also called "Ike Dollars" after the late president's popular nickname.
Watch Now: 6 Interesting Facts About the Ike Dollar
History of the Eisenhower Dollar
The United States Mint minted them from 1971 through 1978. There were many special strikings in different finishes and compositions that were marketed especially to coin collectors. Frank Gasparro designed this coin to honor both President Dwight D. Eisenhower and the first landing of a man on the moon in 1969. The obverse features a portrait bust of the late president facing right. The reverse is an adaptation of the official Apollo 11's mission insignia.
During its eight-year production run, the United States Mint modified the dies several times by changing the relief and strengthening some of the design elements. These changes in 1972 resulted in three different die varieties. One of them is rare and actively sought after by collectors.
A special reverse design was implemented to celebrate the nation's Bicentennial. The Treasury Secretary selected Dennis R. Williams' design featuring a rendition of the Liberty Bell superimposed on the moon. This reverse design celebrated both the recent moon landings and the 200th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence. The mint began production of these dual-dated bicentennial coins of 1776-1976 in 1975 to meet the anticipated demand of collectors across the country. Therefore there are no Eisenhower dollars dated 1975.
Although they do not circulate anymore, occasionally people will bring rolls of them into their local bank to exchange for paper money. Therefore, uncirculated coins sell for a premium over the circulated coins. Identifying key dates, rarities, and varieties for Ike dollars is an important skill for serious coin collectors.
Key Dates, Rarities, and Varieties
The following Eisenhower dollars command a small premium above the more common Eisenhower dollars.
1972 Type 2 Reverse Uncirculated
The Philadelphia mint created three different Eisenhower dollar reverses. They are known as type one, two, and three. The second type is the hardest to acquire. The easiest way to recognize this coin is to look at the small image of the earth on the reverse of the coin. If the three islands below Florida are almost nonexistent, then this is the rare Type II variety.
1976 Bicentennial Type 1 and 2 Reverse
This coin is not rare nor is it a key date, but there are two different varieties. Notice the difference in the thickness of the lettering in the United States of America. The reverse that has the thicker letters around the circumference of the coin, is the Type I coin. These coins were minted in 1975 in order to produce more coins for the Bicentennial. The coins produced in 1976, Type II, had a narrow thinner letter which made it easier to produce.
Condition or Grade
If your coin is worn and exhibits evidence of circulation in commerce, it is considered a circulated coin. However, if your coin has no evidence of wear and its surfaces are pristine, it is considered an uncirculated coin.
The United States Mint produced Eisenhower (Ike) Dollars at three different mints: Philadelphia (no mint mark), Denver (D) and San Francisco (S). The mint mark is located on the obverse of the coin, just below the truncation of President Eisenhower's portrait and just above the date.
Eisenhower Dollars Average Prices and Values
The following table lists the buy price (what you can expect to pay to a dealer to purchase the coin) and the sell value (what you can expect a dealer to pay you if you sell the coin). These are approximate retail prices and wholesale values. The actual offer you receive from a particular coin dealer will vary depending on the actual grade of the coin and some other factors that determine its worth.
|Date & Mint||Circ. Buy||Circ. Sell||Unc. Buy||Unc. Sell|
|1971-S Slv. Proof Proof||-||-||$14.00||$10.50|
|1971-S Slv. Pr Cameo Proof||-||-||$15.00||$12.50|
|1971-S Slv. Pr Deep Cameo Proof||-||-||$16.00||$11.00|
|1972 Type 1||$2.00||$1.20||$16.00||$12.00|
|1972 Type 2 *||$20.00||$17.50||$100.00||$85.00|
|1972 Type 3||$2.00||$1.05||$12.00||$8.00|
|1972-S Slv. Proof Proof||-||-||$14.00||$12.00|
|1972-S Slv. Pr Cameo Proof||-||-||$15.00||$11.00|
|1972-S Slv. Pr Deep Cameo Proof||-||-||$15.00||$11.00|
|1973-S Slv. Proof Proof||-||-||$13.00||$9.40|
|1973-S Slv. Pr Cameo Proof||-||-||$14.80||$10.80|
|1973-S Slv. Pr Deep Cameo Proof||-||-||$20.00||$14.00|
|1973-S Cl. Proof Proof||-||-||$7.50||$5.50|
|1973-S Cl. Pr Cameo Proof||-||-||$8.50||$6.00|
|1973-S Cl. Pr Deep Cam Proof||-||-||$11.50||$8.00|
|1974-S Slv. Proof Proof||-||-||$13.00||$9.00|
|1974-S Slv. Pr Cameo Proof||-||-||$15.00||$10.00|
|1974-S Slv. Pr Deep Cameo Proof||-||-||$15.00||$11.00|
|1974-S Cl. Proof Proof||-||-||$7.75||$5.00|
|1974-S Cl. Pr Cameo Proof||-||-||$8.00||$5.75|
|1974-S Cl. Pr Deep Cam Proof||-||-||$10.00||$6.50|
|Date & Mint||Circ. Buy||Circ. Sell||Unc. Buy||Unc. Sell|
|1976 Type 1||$2.00||$1.20||$7.30||$5.10|
|1976 Type 2||$2.00||$1.20||$4.70||$3.40|
|1976-D Type 1||$2.00||$1.20||$6.10||$4.40|
|1976-D Type 2||$2.00||$1.20||$4.80||$3.30|
|1976-S Cl. Pr Type 1 Proof||-||-||$7.20||$5.20|
|1976-S Cl. Pr Type 1 Cam Proof||-||-||$8.30||$5.50|
|1976-S Cl. Pr Type 1 Deep Cam Proof||-||-||$9.60||$6.60|
|1976-S Cl. Pr Type 2 Proof||-||-||$6.90||$5.00|
|1976-S Cl. Pr Type 2 Cam Proof||-||-||$7.60||$5.60|
|1976-S Cl. Pr Type 2 Deep Cam Proof||-||-||$8.80||$6.20|
|1976-S Slv. Proof Proof||-||-||$13.20||$9.00|
|1976-S Slv. Pr Cameo Proof||-||-||$15.00||$11.00|
|1976-S Slv. Pr Deep Cam Proof||-||-||$15.00||$10.00|
|1977-S Cl. Proof Proof||-||-||$7.30||$5.10|
|1977-S Cl. Pr Cameo Proof||-||-||$8.80||$6.50|
|1977-S Cl. Pr Deep Cam Proof||-||-||$10.30||$7.10|
|1978-S Cl. Proof Proof||-||-||$8.50||$5.70|
|1978-S Cl. Pr Cameo Proof||-||-||$10.10||$7.40|
|1978-S Cl. Pr Deep Cam Proof||-||-||$11.00||$7.30|
Total Coins: 21
Total Coins: 7
B.V. = Bullion value (see: current intrinsic metal value of U.S. silver coins)
F.V. = Face value
- = Not Applicable or not enough data exists to calculate an average price
* = See the section above "Key Dates, Rarities, and Varieties" for more information on these coins.
This article is about the American coin struck from 1971 to 1978. For the 1990 dollar coin issued to commemorate the centennial of Eisenhower’s birth, see Eisenhower commemorative dollar. For information on the dollar depicting Eisenhower issued in 2015, see Presidential $1 Coin Program.
United States dollar coin
|Value||1 U.S. dollar|
~22.68 g (350 gr)Silver clad:
~24.624 g (380 gr)
|Diameter||38.1 mm (1.5 in)|
|Thickness||2.58 mm (0.1 in)|
|Composition||Circulation strikes: outer layers of 75.0% copper 25.0% nickel clad with a core of 100% copper (in all 91.67% copper, 8.33% nickel).|
For silver clad: Outer layers of 80% silver with a center of 20.9% silver. Aggregate 60% copper, 40% silver
|Silver||None in circulation strikes. For silver-clad pieces 0.3162 troy oz|
|Years of minting||1971–1978. Coins struck in 1975 and 1976 bear double date "1776–1976"|
|Mint marks||D, S. Located on the obverse beneath Eisenhower's bust. Mint mark omitted on Philadelphia Mint issues.|
|Design||Dwight D. Eisenhower|
|Design||Eagle clutching olive branch landing on the Moon, based on the Apollo 11mission insignia designed by astronaut Michael Collins|
|Design date||1971 (Not struck in 1975–76)|
The Eisenhower dollar was a one-dollar coin issued by the United States Mint from 1971 to 1978; it was the first coin of that denomination issued by the Mint since the Peace dollar series ended in 1935. The coin depicts PresidentDwight D. Eisenhower on the obverse, and a stylized image honoring the 1969 Apollo 11 Moon mission on the reverse, with both sides designed by Frank Gasparro (the reverse is based on the Apollo 11 mission patch designed by astronaut Michael Collins). It is the only large-size U.S. dollar coin whose circulation strikes contained no silver.
In 1965, because of rises in bullion prices, the Mint began to strike copper-nickel clad coins instead of silver. No dollar coins had been issued in thirty years, but, beginning in 1969, legislators sought to reintroduce a dollar coin into commerce. After Eisenhower died that March, there were a number of proposals to honor him with the new coin. While these bills generally commanded wide support, enactment was delayed by a dispute over whether the new coin should be in base metal or 40% silver. In 1970, a compromise was reached to strike the Eisenhower dollar in base metal for circulation, and in 40% silver as a collectible. President Richard Nixon, who had served as vice president under Eisenhower, signed legislation authorizing mintage of the new coin on December 31, 1970.
Although the collector's pieces sold well, the new dollars failed to circulate to any degree, except in and around Nevada casinos, where they took the place of privately issued tokens. There are no dollars dated 1975; coins from that year and from 1976 bear a double date 1776–1976, and a special reverse by Dennis R. Williams in honor of the bicentennial of American independence. Beginning in 1977, the Mint sought to replace the Eisenhower dollar with a smaller-sized piece. Congress authorized the Susan B. Anthony dollar, struck beginning in 1979, but that coin also failed to circulate. Given their modest cost and the short length of the series, complete sets of Eisenhower dollars are inexpensive to assemble and are becoming more popular among coin collectors.
Further information: Peace dollar § Striking of 1964-D dollars, and Coinage Act of 1965 § Coin shortage
The silver dollar had never been a popular coin, circulating little except in the West; it served as a means of monetizing metal and generally sat in bank vaults once struck. The Peace dollar, the last circulating dollar made of silver, was not struck after 1935, and in most years in the quarter century after that, the bullion value of a silver dollar did not exceed 70 cents. In the early 1960s, though, silver prices rose, and the huge stocks of silver dollars in the hands of banks and the government were obtained by the public through the redemption of silver certificates. This caused shortages of silver dollars in the western states where the pieces circulated, and interests there sought the issuance of more dollars.
On August 3, 1964, Congress passed legislation providing for the striking of 45 million silver dollars. This legislation was enacted when coins vanished from circulation as the price of silver rose past $1.29 per ounce, making silver dollars worth more as bullion than as currency. The new pieces were intended to be used at Nevada casinos and elsewhere in the West where "hard money" was popular. Numismatic periodicals complained that striking the dollars was a waste of resources. The law had been passed at the urging of the Senate Majority Leader, Mike Mansfield (Democrat–Montana), who represented a state that heavily used silver dollars. Despite the efforts of Mint Director Eva Adams and her staff to persuade him, Senator Mansfield refused to consider any cancellation or delay, and on May 12, 1965 the Denver Mint began striking 1964-D Peace dollars—the Mint had obtained congressional authorization to continue striking 1964-dated coins into 1965.
A public announcement of the new pieces was made on May 15, 1965, only to be met with a storm of objections. Both the public and many congressmen saw the issue as a poor use of Mint resources at a time of severe coin shortages, which would only benefit coin dealers. On May 24, one day before a hastily called congressional hearing, Adams announced that the pieces were deemed trial strikes, never intended for circulation. The Mint later stated that 316,076 pieces had been struck; all were reported melted amid heavy security. To ensure that there would be no repetition, Congress inserted a provision in the Coinage Act of 1965 forbidding the coinage of silver dollars for five years. That act also removed silver from the dime and quarter, and reduced the silver content of the half dollar to 40%.
In 1969, Nixon administration Mint Director Mary Brooks sought the reissuance of the dollar coin. By this time, rising bullion prices threatened the continued use of silver in the Kennedy half dollar, but Brooks hoped to maintain the dollar as a silver coin. Brooks' proposal for a new silver dollar was opposed by the chairman of the House Banking Committee, Wright Patman, who had been persuaded, against his better judgment, by Nixon's predecessor, Lyndon Johnson, to support the continued use of silver in the half dollar.
On March 28, 1969, former president and World War II general Dwight D. Eisenhower died. Soon after, New Jersey Representative Florence Dwyer, like Eisenhower, a Republican, suggested that the proposed dollar coin bear his likeness. She spoke to Democratic Missouri Representative Leonor Sullivan, who agreed that the dollar should bear a portrait of Eisenhower as "equal time" to the half dollar, which bore the likeness of Democratic president John F. Kennedy. A bill was filed by Connecticut Congressman Robert N. Giaimo to authorize an Eisenhower dollar, to be struck without silver content. The Joint Commission on the Coinage, drawing members from the administration and from Congress, including Giaimo, recommended the dollar in spring 1969. It also called for the elimination of silver from the half dollar, and for the transfer from the Treasury to the General Services Administration (GSA) of quantities of rare silver dollars, so they could be sold. Giaimo noted that the coin would be useful in casinos, which were striking their own tokens in the absence of circulating dollar coins, and in the vending industry, which was starting to sell higher-priced items.
On October 3, 1969, the House Banking Committee passed legislation for a silverless Eisenhower dollar, with Patman stating that he hoped to have it approved by the full House in time for the late president's birthday on October 14. On October 6, the bill's sponsors lost a procedural vote which would have allowed for no amendments. While some representatives spoke against the manner in which the legislation was to be considered, Iowa Congressman H. R. Gross objected to the base-metal composition of the proposed coin: "You would be doing the memory of President Eisenhower no favor to mint a dollar made perhaps of scrap metal." Both houses voted on October 14, Eisenhower's birthday. Although the House passed the administration-backed bill for a base metal dollar, the Senate passed the bill as amended by Colorado Senator Peter Dominick, calling for the piece to be minted in 40% silver. Instrumental in the passage of the Senate amendment was a letter from Mamie Eisenhower, recalling that her husband had liked to give silver dollars as mementoes, and had gone to some effort to obtain coins struck in the year of his birth, 1890. Idaho Senator James McClure stated, "It is somehow beneath the dignity of a great president like General Eisenhower to withhold silver from the coin." On October 29, 1969, Texas Representative Robert R. Casey introduced legislation to honor both Eisenhower and the recent Apollo 11Moon landing. These provisions would become part of the enacted bill authorizing the Eisenhower dollar. Casey originally wanted the mission theme of Apollo 11, "We came in peace for all mankind," to appear on the coin; when the Mint informed him that there was not room for that inscription, he settled for requiring that the reverse design be emblematic of that theme.
In March 1970, the two houses reached a compromise whereby 150 million dollars would be struck in the 40% silver alloy for collectors and others. The circulating dollar, though, would have no silver and would be struck in larger quantities. The 47.4 million troy ounces of silver needed to strike the collectors' pieces would come from bullion already held by the government. The compromise was worked out by McClure and other congressional Republicans, with the aid of Brooks, an Idahoan. McClure described the deal as "a lot less than the country deserves, but a lot more than it appeared we would get." The reason for having a collector's edition with silver was to avoid the hoarding which had driven the Kennedy half dollar from circulation.
Although the compromise passed the Senate in March 1970, it was blocked in the House by Representative Patman, who was determined to end silver in the coinage. The Senate passed the bill again in September, this time attaching it as a rider to a bank holding company bill sought by Patman. The bill, which also included provisions to eliminate silver from the half dollar and to transfer the rare silver dollars to the GSA, was approved by a conference committee and passed both houses. Nixon had intended to let the bill pass into law without his signature. When aides realized that as Congress had adjourned, not signing the bill would pocket veto it, on December 31, 1970, Nixon hastily signed it only minutes before the midnight deadline.
For Mint Chief Engraver Frank Gasparro, the opportunity to put Eisenhower on a coin was the fulfillment of a longtime dream. On June 19, 1945, Gasparro had been one of more than 4 million people who gathered in New York to watch a parade celebrating the Allied victory in Europe. Although Gasparro, then an assistant engraver at the Mint, only saw a glimpse of General Eisenhower, he stepped back from the crowd and drew the general's features. That sketch served as the basis of his design for the obverse. Gasparro consulted with the late president's widow, Mamie Eisenhower, as to the designs of both sides of the coin; the former First Lady was presented with a galvano (a metallic model used in the coin design process) by Brooks and Gasparro on January 1, 1971. Gasparro wrote in 1991 that he had six weeks to complete the work beginning in mid-November 1970, that his extensive research into eagles over the years was a great help in creating the reverse, and that his sketches were adopted without change. The chief engraver was not given full freedom of design; he was instructed to have the layout of the obverse resemble that of the Washington quarter.
Before the legislation passed, Gasparro had prepared two reverses, the one actually used, and a reverse with a more formal heraldic eagle, which numismatic historian and coin dealer Q. David Bowers finds reminiscent of pattern coins prepared in the 1870s. At Congress's insistence, the chief engraver created a design in commemoration of the Apollo 11 lunar landing, based on the mission patch conceived by astronaut Michael Collins and others. Bowers deems the choice of the lunar landing "a stroke of genius," allowing the dollar, which would be little-used in commerce, to be a commemorative both of Eisenhower and of the Moon mission. The reverse depicts an eagle (representing the Lunar Module Eagle) swooping low over the Moon's surface, holding an olive branch, token of peace, in its claws.
The use of Collins' mission patch design had initially been opposed by some government officials because of the fierce expression of the eagle; Gasparro's initial concept met similar objections. The Mint Director recalled that Gasparro had gone to the Philadelphia Zoo to look at eagles, and on his return had prepared a design which she felt emphasized the eagle's predatory nature. Brooks informed Gasparro that the eagle was "too fierce, too warlike, a little too aggressive" and asked that the expression be made friendlier. Gasparro, who reportedly was unhappy at having to change the eagle, described the final version as "pleasant looking." The State Department also feared that the eagle's expression might offend, and sought a neutral visage. The distant Earth may be seen above the bird, and there are 13 stars in honor of the original states.
Bowers deems the bust of Eisenhower "well modeled" by Gasparro, and notes that the fact that the eagle on the reverse holds only an olive branch, rather than arrows as well (token of war), "meant that the public would like the design." Nevertheless, he notes that Eisenhower's stern expression was widely criticized as not typical of a man noted for geniality. Numismatic author David Lange opines that "the Eisenhower dollar is one of the poorest products to emanate from the U.S. Mint." Lange writes that, although Gasparro had designed only one side of the coin for the Kennedy half dollar and Lincoln Memorial reverse for the cent, "the Eisenhower dollar was his design alone and should have served as a showcase for his talent. Sadly, it is a mediocre design that reveals his typically unnatural treatment of Ike's hair and the eagle's feathers." Some collectors complained after the release that the Earth was not fully shown, not realizing that Gasparro had carefully followed the mission badge. The chief engraver responded by clarifying the design.
Two prototype dollars were struck at the Philadelphia Mint on January 25, 1971; they were subsequently destroyed. However, collectors have found at least two 1971-S coins that have been certified as prototypes. Striking such large pieces of tough copper-nickel proved destructive to the Mint's dies, and Gasparro repeatedly used the Janvier reducing lathe to lower the relief to be used on the circulation strikes and the uncirculated silver clad coins. The chief engraver altered the resulting master die directly to restore at least some of the detail which was lost as the relief was lowered. The proof coins struck at San Francisco, nevertheless, remained in high relief. This meant that in 1971 and for much of 1972 (until better-quality steel was used in the dies), the uncirculated strikes had a lower relief, less detailed surface, compared with the proof coins. Proof coins are struck slowly, and generally multiple times, to bring out the full detail. Striking of Eisenhower dollars for circulation began at Denver on February 3, apparently without any ceremony; minting at Philadelphia also began early in the year, although Bowers, in his comprehensive encyclopedia of silver and clad dollar coins, does not record a specific date. The first Eisenhower dollars in 40% silver, with an uncirculated finish, were struck at the San Francisco Assay Office (today the San Francisco Mint) on March 31, 1971; Brooks ceremoniously operated the presses. The first coin struck was for presentation to Mamie Eisenhower; the second to David Eisenhower (grandson of Dwight and Mamie Eisenhower) and the third to David Eisenhower's father-in-law, President Nixon.
On January 29, 1971, the Mint announced the prices for the 40% silver pieces which would be struck at San Francisco: $3 for uncirculated specimens and $10 for mirror-surfaced proof pieces, with orders to be taken by mail beginning on July 1, with a limit of five of each per customer. Order forms for the public were shipped to 44,000 post offices and 33,000 banks, with instructions not to hand them out until June 18. The Mint returned some orders for being sent in too early.Mint sets of the circulating coinage for 1971 did not include the Eisenhower dollar.
The first proof strikes, at San Francisco, took place in July. The proof pieces were sold in a plastic holder inside a brown box with a gold eagle seal; the uncirculated silver pieces were encased in pliofilm inside a blue envelope. These were dubbed "brown Ikes" and "blue Ikes" and are still known by those terms. On July 27, 1971, President Nixon presented the first piece to be struck to Mamie Eisenhower at a White House ceremony. Sales of the 40% silver pieces were ended on October 8; the first proof coins were mailed to collectors on October 14, President Eisenhower's birthday.
The clad circulation strikes of the Eisenhower dollar, the largest clad coin ever issued by the US Mint, were available to the general public through banks beginning on November 1, 1971. Many were hoarded by collectors; there was initially sufficient demand for the coins that many banks imposed a limit of one coin per customer. The clad pieces were struck from coinage strip purchased by the Mint from contractors. Many were not well-struck, causing collectors to purchase rolls in search of better specimens. An oily film was found on a large number of the coins; these coins were cleaned by collectors.
Though there was initially strong public interest in the new dollar, from the very start the coin still failed to circulate. In 1976, a Treasury study done in conjunction with a private-sector firm found that the Eisenhower dollar had a near-100 percent attrition rate, that is, almost always, a coin was used in only one transaction, and then stopped circulating (by comparison, the attrition rate of the quarter was close to zero). This was because of the coin's bulky size and weight, and the lack of potential uses for it. Even so, it was successful in quickly replacing private-issue tokens in Nevada casinos. According to numismatist Randy Camper, over 70% of "circulating" Eisenhower dollars were used in casinos. Although the vending machine industry lobbied for the Eisenhower dollar, few machines were modified to accept the coins. Lange recalled, "The fact is that these coins never circulated outside of casinos and nearby areas, and I don't recall ever seeing a vending machine that accepted them."
Early years (1971–1974)
The Mint struck over 125 million of the Eisenhower dollars in 1971, more than doubling its largest annual production for a dollar coin. Despite an increased mintage in 1972 to over 170 million, and despite what COINage magazine termed "near-heroic measures on the part of the Mint", the piece did not circulate. In a 1974 article for COINage, numismatist Clement F. Bailey noted, "the circulation value of the coin has been nil". Many Eisenhower dollars were put aside as souvenirs by non-collectors. Nevertheless, the silver coins sold so well that in October 1971, Mint Director Brooks warned that orders for 1971-S proof dollars would not all be filled until well into 1972. She ascribed the delay to the large public demand and to production difficulties which she indicated had been corrected. More than 11 million of the 1971-S silver pieces were sold, in proof and uncirculated, with nearly 7 million in proof. In May 1972, Treasury Secretary John Connally, testifying before a Senate committee, described the profits the Mint had made on the silver version of the Eisenhower dollar as "just unconscionable", with the average profit on a silver coin at $3.89, and expected to increase as production became more efficient. Mint officials felt that reducing the price would anger those who had already purchased the pieces.
The 1972 silver pieces were again struck at San Francisco. Sales dropped considerably, to just under 2.2 million specimens in uncirculated and 1.8 million in proof. The part-silver 1972-S Eisenhower dollars were available for sale by mail order, with the ordering period from May 1 to July 15 for the proof coins and August 1 to October 16 for the uncirculated version.
With ample supplies of Eisenhower dollars, the Federal Reserve had no need to order any in 1973, and none were struck for circulation. The 1973 and 1973-D were the first Eisenhower dollars struck for inclusion in mint sets, and were, in theory, only available that way. Over the years, many 1973 and 1973-D dollar coins have been found in circulation, leading to speculation that the 230,798 pieces which were reported melted, after the Mint failed to sell as many mint sets as anticipated, were released into circulation. John Wexler, Bill Crawford, and Kevin Flynn, in their volume on Eisenhower dollars, deny this, citing a 1974 letter from Assistant Director of the Mint for Public Services Roy C. Cahoon, which stated that all 1973 Eisenhower dollars from unsold mint sets were melted. The 1973-S was struck for inclusion in base-metal proof sets, as well as for the regular "blue Ikes" and "brown Ikes". Sales of the part-silver pieces dipped to a total of just under 2.9 million. The coin was struck again for circulation in 1974, was included in mint sets and proof sets, and was available in proof and uncirculated silver clad from San Francisco. Congress ordered that some of the money from the sale of 1974-S silver pieces be used to support Eisenhower College in Seneca Falls, New York. Coin collectors felt that this set a bad precedent, but about $9 million was paid to the college between 1974 and 1978; yet, despite the infusion of money, the college closed its doors in 1982.
Bicentennial issue (1975–1976)
For further information on the circulating commemorative quarters, half dollars and dollars struck in 1975–1976, see United States Bicentennial coinage.
Type I Bicentennial, struck in 1975
Type II Bicentennial, struck 1975–76
The United States had issued commemorative coins between 1892 and 1954, as a means for fundraising for organizations deemed worthy of federal support. A sponsoring organization would be designated in the authorizing legislation, and was permitted to buy up the issue at face value, selling it to the public at a premium, and pocketing the difference. Various problems with the issues, including mishandling of distributions and complaints that public coins should not be used for private profit, resulted in firm Treasury Department opposition to such issues, and none were struck after 1954.
The American Revolutionary Bicentennial Commission (ARBC) was established by Congress in 1966 as an oversight body for the 1976 two-hundredth anniversary of American independence (the "Bicentennial"). In 1970, its coins and medals advisory committee recommended the issuance of a special half dollar, and subsequently the committee sought the temporary redesign of circulating American coins. Brooks and the Mint initially opposed legislation to effect these proposals, but eventually Brooks supported legislation to redesign the reverses of the quarter, half dollar and dollar coins, and to issue special collector's sets in silver clad. Legislation to authorize this was signed by President Nixon on October 18, 1973. By the terms of this legislation, coins of these denomination minted for delivery after July 4, 1975 and before December 31, 1976 would bear special reverses, and also be dated 1776–1976. A total of 15 million sets (45 million) coins in all would be struck in silver clad for sale to the public at a premium.
The reverse designs for the three Bicentennial coins were determined by a design competition open to the public. This competition closed in January 1974, and in March, a design submitted by 22-year-old art student Dennis R. Williams was selected for the dollar. Williams, the youngest person to that point to design a U.S. coin, had submitted a design depicting the Liberty Bell superimposed against the Moon. Gasparro slightly modified the design, simplifying the features visible on the lunar surface, and altering the lettering and the bell. Williams and the designers of the other denominations operated the presses to strike the first coins on August 12, 1974; a set of these prototypes was later given to the new president, Gerald Ford. Williams' design was liked by the public but attracted criticism from some numismatists as the Liberty Bell had been previously used on coinage (for example, on the Franklin half dollar). Fearing that a low-mintage 1975 piece would be hoarded, the Mint obtained legislation in December 1974 allowing it to continue coining 1974-dated pieces until it began coinage of Bicentennial pieces.
The Bicentennial dollars were the first of the three denominations to be struck for distribution to the public; these were coined beginning in February 1975. The silver pieces were struck at San Francisco beginning on April 23, 1975. The Mint found that the copper nickel dollar was striking indistinctly, a problem not seen with the silver pieces. Brooks called a halt in production to allow Gasparro to modify the dies; the most noticeable change is that the revised issue, or Type II as it came to be known, have narrower, sharper lettering on the reverse. All silver pieces (struck only at San Francisco) are Type I; all three mints struck both Type I and Type II copper nickel pieces. All dollars included in 1975 proof sets are Type I; all those included in 1976 proof sets are Type II. The first Bicentennial dollars were released into circulation on October 13, 1975. Over 220 million were struck. The Bicentennial design was not used after 1976; sets of silver clad Bicentennial coins were sold by the Mint until sales were finally closed at the end of 1986.
One proof Bicentennial coin in silver clad and lacking a mint mark, similar to the dollar in the prototype set given to President Ford, is known. This piece supposedly came from a cash register drawer at the Woodward & Lothrop department store in Washington, D.C. Thomas K. DeLorey, who was then a reporter for Coin World, spoke to the discoverer and was suspicious of the story, thinking it more likely the coin was surreptitiously obtained from the government. He declined to question the origin then, fearing it might be seized and, therefore, not available to numismatists. The piece brought almost $30,000 by private sale in 1987.
Final years and replacement (1977–1978)
Main article: Susan B. Anthony dollar
By 1975, the Treasury was concerned about the drain on resources from striking the dollar, which did not circulate. It engaged a private firm to study the six current denominations of U.S. coinage, and make recommendations. The firm concluded in its report that the Eisenhower dollar was too large and heavy to circulate effectively, but if the diameter was reduced by about a third, and the weight by two-thirds, it might be used. That report found that "the Eisenhower dollar has not been widely accepted by the public because of its large size and weight". In January 1977, just prior to leaving office, Ford's Treasury Secretary, William E. Simon, proposed the elimination of the cent and half dollar, and a reduction in size of the dollar. According to Bowers, the Treasury had come to believe that a coin as large as the Eisenhower dollar simply would not circulate in the United States.
The Mint struck pattern pieces of the smaller size, with various shapes and compositions. An 11-sided coin was considered, which would have differentiated it from the quarter, but the patterns would not work in vending machines. Such exotic metals as titanium were considered before the Mint decided on the standard clad composition. Gasparro prepared, for the circulating pieces, a design showing Liberty with flowing hair, similar to early American coins.
As the Eisenhower dollar awaited its demise, approximately 50 million per year were struck, using the eagle design for the reverse. In both years, the majority coined were at Denver. No silver collector's edition was issued; the blue and brown Ikes ended with 1974.
The new Treasury Secretary, Michael Blumenthal, supported Gasparro's design in testimony before Congress; Wisconsin Senator William Proxmire dubbed Blumenthal's position a "cop-out". Proxmire refused to introduce the bill, which would have left the choice of design up to Blumenthal or his successor, instead introducing his own legislation to commemorate early women's rights leader Susan B. Anthony. Many in the new Congress and in the Carter Administration were social progressives, and supported women's lib. Ohio Representative Mary Rose Oakar also introduced legislation for a Susan B. Anthony dollar in October 1978; it proceeded rapidly through Congress and was signed by President Jimmy Carter. Gasparro was given photographs of Anthony and told to reproduce her appearance exactly on the coin. Anthony's stern expression caused some to dub it the "Susan B. Agony" dollar. The Eisenhower dollar's reverse was used for the Anthony dollar. Convinced that the public would hoard the new pieces, the Mint Bureau produced half a billion before its official release to the public on July 2, 1979. It need not have worried; the public quickly rejected the new coin as too close in size and weight to the quarter dollar, and production for circulation ceased after 1980. Mint Director Stella Hackel Sims stated, "people are accustomed to the Eisenhower dollar, but in time, they'll become accustomed to the Susan". Attempts were made to give the new smaller dollars out as change in postal transactions, and to force their use by U.S. military personnel in Europe; both failed.
The Eisenhower dollar is the final regular-issue dollar coin to have been minted in silver (collectors and proof issues were minted with a purity of 40% Ag), the final dollar coin to be minted in the original large size, and the only circulating ‘large dollar’ to have been minted in cupronickel.
|Appearance of the Earth |
on the 1972 Eisenhower dollar
Collected by date and mint mark, no Eisenhower dollar is rare, and a complete set may be acquired without difficulty. However, many were badly struck, without full detail, especially in 1971 and 1972, and most pieces acquired nicks, scratches or "bag marks" from contact with each other soon after striking. Although lower-grade silver coins can be melted, this is not practical for Eisenhower dollars due to the lack of precious metal content, and dealers often try to get any premium they can on face value. Completing a set of highest-grade specimens may be difficult and expensive, especially for the 1971 and 1972 from Philadelphia or Denver, which were not sold in mint sets, and thus only came to collectors through banks. A 1973-D piece, tied with ten other specimens for the finest known of that date and mint mark in near-pristine MS-67 condition sold in June 2013 for $12,925. According to numismatic writer Steve Reach, "as more people submit modern-era coins like Eisenhower dollars for third-party certification, the true rarity of many issues in top-grades is becoming clear."
Some of the 1971-D pieces exhibit a variety in which (among several differences) the eagle lacks brow lines, these have been dubbed by Eisenhower dollar specialists the "Friendly Eagle Pattern". The 1972 dollar struck at Philadelphia is broken down into three varieties, which were made as Gasparro adjusted the design to take advantage of better steel being used in the Mint's dies. A midyear change in the design was announced by Brooks at the American Numismatic Association's 1972 convention in New Orleans, although she did not state exactly what was being changed. The three varieties may be differentiated by examining the depiction of the Earth on the reverse. Type I dollars show the Earth somewhat flattened, Florida pointing to the southeast, with the islands mostly to the southeast of the tip of the peninsula. The Earth is round and Florida points to the south on the Type II, with a single, large island to the southeast. The Type III is similar to the Type II, except that there are two islands directly to the south of the peninsula. The Type II is from a single reverse die, used in March 1972, and erroneously placed in service at Philadelphia—it is identical to and should have been used for the silver proof strikes at San Francisco. The Type III was placed in service, replacing the Type I, in September 1972. The Type I is most common; the Type III design was used in 1973 and after. The 1972 Type II is expensive in top grades, as is the 1776–1976 Type I from Philadelphia, which was only available in mint sets.
Some 1971-S proof pieces (and a few uncirculated 1971-S) have the serifs at the foot of the "R" in "LIBERTY" missing; this is dubbed the "peg leg" variety. The serifs are missing on all 1972-S, both uncirculated and proof. After the Mint obtained better steel for dies, the serifs returned for all of the remaining non-Bicentennial coinage, from all mints, though the leg of the R was shortened, and also for the Type II Bicentennial (the Type I lacks serifs on the R). Gasparro was often trying to improve the detail of Eisenhower's head during the coin's tenure, and as the R is the letter closest to it, these changes were most likely made in an effort to improve the flow of metal as the coins were struck.
In 1974 and again in 1977, the Denver Mint struck a small number of pieces on silver-clad planchets, or blanks. Both times, these came from planchets which had been shipped from the San Francisco Assay Office to Denver. The first ones in 1974 were found independently by two Las Vegas blackjack dealers. The 1974 planchets were initially intended to be used for "brown Ike" proof strikings; Mint policy then was that rejected silver proof planchets were to be used for uncirculated "blue Ikes", but these were placed in the bin for rejected copper-nickel proof planchets, intended to be shipped to be coined for circulation at Denver. The 1977 pieces resulted from pieces rejected for Bicentennial silver proof use, which were again placed in the wrong bin (they should have been melted, as the Mint was no longer striking silver uncirculated Eisenhower dollars). Between 10 and 20 of each date are known. Wexler, Crawford, and Flynn report an even rarer 1776–1976-D dollar in silver, but state that none have been offered at auction or submitted to the major coin grading services.
Bowers notes that the Morgan dollar (struck between 1878 and 1921) was not widely collected at the time, only to become very popular later, and suggests that one day, the turn of the Eisenhower dollar will come. Numismatist Charles Morgan said of the Eisenhower dollar in 2012,
It stands today as the greatest achievement in clad coinage in U.S. history. It was the most technically challenging coin ever attempted ... Researching the Eisenhower Dollar is vital for numismatic historians who want to understand what the post-silver era was like. The Eisenhower Dollar was a noble failure. In this respect, it truly is a perfect collectible coin.
- ^THE LYDSTON AND CHATHAM 1971-S PROTOTYPE IKES
- ^Yeoman, R. S. (Richard S.) (2019-04-09). A guide book of United States coins. Bressett, Kenneth E.,, Bowers, Q. David,, Garrett, Jeff (Numismatist) (73rd edition, 2020 ed.). Pelham, AL. ISBN . OCLC 1091623267.
- ^""Ike" Dollars - Littleton Coin Blog". Littleton Coin Company Blog. 2014-11-12. Retrieved 2020-02-24.
- ^"Finding Ike dollar in general circulation uncommon". CoinWorld. Retrieved 2020-02-24.
- Bowers, Q. David (1993). Silver Dollars and Trade Dollars of the United States: A Complete Encyclopedia. Wolfeboro, NH: Bowers and Merena Galleries, Inc. ISBN .
- Breen, Walter (1988). Walter Breen's Complete Encyclopedia of U.S. and Colonial Coins. New York, NY: Doubleday. ISBN .
- Burdette, Roger W. (2005). Renaissance of American Coinage, 1916–1921. Great Falls, VA: Seneca Mill Press. ISBN .
- Coin World Almanac (3rd ed.). Sidney, OH: Amos Press. 1977. ASIN B004AB7C9M.
- Ganz, David L. (1976). 14 Bits: The Story of America's Bicentennial Coinage. Washington, DC: Three Continents Press. ISBN .
- Wexler, John; Crawford, Bill; Flynn, Kevin (2007). The Authoritative Reference on Eisenhower Dollars (2nd ed.). Roswell, GA: Kyle Vick. ISBN .
- Yeoman, R.S. (2013). A Guide Book of United States Coins 2014 (67th ed.). Atlanta, GA: Whitman Publishing, LLC. ISBN .
- Other sources
- Bailey, Clement F. (September 1974). "Ike's dollar—the successful failure". COINage. Encino, CA: Behn-Miller Publishers, Inc.: 8–10, 94, 98.
- Bardes, Herbert C. (September 13, 1964). "Treasury to go ahead on '64 date freeze". The New York Times. p. X32. Retrieved February 25, 2011.(subscription required)
- "Eisenhower dollar goes to widow". The Blade. Toledo, OH. July 28, 1971. p. 14. Retrieved February 27, 2013.
- "Treasury making mint on Ike dollars". The Blade. Toledo, OH. May 11, 1972. p. 43. Retrieved March 1, 2013.
- "Silver content in Ike dollar draws charges". The Bulletin. Bend, OR. October 15, 1969. p. 20. Retrieved February 24, 2013.
- "An unhappy coin". COINage. Encino, CA: Behn-Miller Publishers, Inc.: 44 May 1979.
- Ezerman, Rob; Golan, David; Vaile, Brian; Hoop, Gary D.; Eassa, Ehab; Hicks, Herbert; Davis, Larry (July 2007). "1971-D Eisenhower dollar friendly eagle pattern". The Numismatist. Colorado Springs, CO: American Numismatic Association: 57–62.
- Ganz, David L. (July 1979). "The steps to Anthony". COINage. Encino, CA: Behn-Miller Publishers, Inc.: 48–49, 52, 116.
- Ganz, David L. (October 1979). "The selling of a coin". COINage. Encino, CA: Behn-Miller Publishers, Inc.: 44, 46.
- Gilkes, Paul. "Eisenhower dollar". Sidney, OH: Amos Publishing Inc. (publishers of Coin World). Retrieved September 1, 2013.
- Grose, Peter (October 15, 1969). "Eisenhower dollar voted by Congress"(PDF). The New York Times. pp. 1, 24. Retrieved February 25, 2013.(subscription required)
- Haney, Thomas W. (June 15, 1969). "Dollar-sized coin being considered". The New York Times. p. D31. Retrieved February 24, 2013.(subscription required)
- Haney, Thomas V. (January 24, 1971). "Ike dollar to be last silver coin". The New York Times. p. D29. Retrieved February 24, 2013.(subscription required)
- Haney, Thomas V. (October 24, 1971). "Silver Ike dollars being mailed". The New York Times. p. D29. Retrieved March 1, 2013.(subscription required)
- Herbert, Alan (November 1998). "Vending industry had role in Ike dollar". Coins. Iola, WI: Krause Publications, Inc.: 32.
- Hicks, Herbert P. (April 1974). "Eisenhower dollar varieties". The Numismatist. Colorado Springs, CO: American Numismatic Association: 640–650. Retrieved March 1, 2013.
- "Earths Type 1, 2 & 3". The Ike Group. March 21, 2012. Retrieved April 23, 2013.
- Lange, David W. (May 1, 2006). "A look back at Ike dollars". Sarasota, FL: Numismatic Guaranty Corporation. Retrieved February 25, 2013.
- Logan, Charles (May 1979). "The checkered history of the "Ike" dollar". COINage. Encino, CA: Behn-Miller Publishers, Inc.: 36–37, 40, 42.
- Logan, Charles (July 1979). "The search for a dollar". COINage. Encino, CA: Behn-Miller Publishers, Inc.: 40, 42, 46.
- Logan, Charles (October 1979). "The Anthony—who goofed?". COINage. Encino, CA: Behn-Miller Publishers, Inc.: 42–43, 101.
- Marotta, Michael E. (May 2001). "The Bicentennial coinage of 1976". The Numismatist. Colorado Springs, CO: American Numismatic Association: 501–503, 541–542. ISSN 0029-6090.
- Morgan, Charles (March 21, 2012). "When dealing with Eisenhower Dollars, grade is everything". CoinWeek. Retrieved April 23, 2013.
- "House unit back [sic] $1 coin for Eisenhower birthday"(PDF). The New York Times. October 4, 1969. Retrieved February 24, 2013.(subscription required)
- "Eisenhower coin blocked in House; critics want silver". The New York Times. October 7, 1969. Retrieved February 25, 2013.(subscription required)
- "Agreement is reached on Eisenhower dollars"(PDF). The New York Times. March 8, 1970. Retrieved February 25, 2013.(subscription required)
- "Eisenhower dollar voted". The New York Times. September 17, 1970. Retrieved February 25, 2013.(subscription required)
- "Eisenhower 'cartwheels' mark return of dollar coin in U.S."The Press-Courier. Toledo, OH. April 1, 1971. p. 2. Retrieved August 12, 2013.
- Reach, Steve (July 15, 2013). "Top Eisenhower dollars soar". Coin World. Sidney, OH: Amos Press. Archived from the original on July 3, 2013. Retrieved July 1, 2013.
- "Silver needs are reported for new coin". Spokane Daily Chronicle. March 6, 1970. Retrieved February 25, 2013.
- "Senate passes Ike dollar plan". Spokane Daily Chronicle. March 20, 1970. p. 2. Retrieved February 25, 2013.
- Wolenik, Robert (March 1971). "Our new Eisenhower dollar". COINage. Encino, CA: Behn-Miller Publishers, Inc.: 28–30, 34, 35.
- "Ike-Moon landing dollars received by city banks". Youngstown Vindicator. November 4, 1971. p. 2. Retrieved March 1, 2013.
Dollar worth bicentennial
Eisenhower Silver Dollar Values & Price Chart
Like Ike? Plenty of coin collectors do! A growing number of numismatists are building sets of Eisenhower dollars.
Read below for a full list of Eisenhower dollar prices.
The Eisenhower dollar was struck from 1971 through 1978 and was intended for regular commerce. Ultimately it failed to see the light of day as a circulating coin beyond the casinos of Las Vegas.
Few people knew back in the 1970s that the Eisenhower dollar would be the last circulating large-size dollar coin in the United States.
Today, it's become one of the top modern collectible coins, and for good reason. Ike dollars constitute a relatively short series with many unusual varieties to collect.
What Are Eisenhower Dollars Worth?
Eisenhower dollars appeal to collectors on a variety of budgets. Many pieces challenge even financially well-heeled collectors. Prices for some key date Ike dollars reach into the thousands of dollars.
Nonetheless, the majority of Eisenhower dollars are much more affordable to obtain. What follows is an Eisenhower dollar price guide. The values reflect examples in MS-63 (uncirculated) and Proof-65 grades.
Eisenhower Dollar Price Chart
|Date||Composition & Finish||Price|
|1971||Copper-Nickel Clad Uncirculated||$4|
|1971-D||Copper-Nickel Clad Uncirculated||$3.50|
|1971-S||40% Silver Clad Uncirculated||$10|
|1971-S||40% Silver Clad Proof||$11|
|1972||Copper-Nickel Clad Uncirculated||$3.50|
|1972-D||Copper-Nickel Clad Uncirculated||$3.50|
|1972-S||40% Silver Clad Uncirculated||$10|
|1972-S||40% Silver Clad Proof||$11|
|1973||Copper-Nickel Clad Uncirculated||$10|
|1973-D||Copper-Nickel Clad Uncirculated||$10|
|1973-S||Copper-Nickel Clad Proof||$11|
|1973-S||40% Silver Clad Uncirculated||$11|
|1973-S||40% Silver Clad Proof||$30|
|1974||Copper-Nickel Clad Uncirculated||$4.50|
|1974-D||Copper-Nickel Clad Uncirculated||$4.50|
|1974-S||Copper-Nickel Clad Proof||$5|
|1974-S||40% Silver Clad Uncirculated||$11|
|1974-S||40% Silver Clad Proof||$13|
|1776–1976||Copper-Nickel Clad Variety I (Thick Reverse Letting) Uncirculated||$6|
|1776–1976||Copper-Nickel Clad Variety II (Serifed Lettering) Uncirculated||$3.50|
|1776–1976-D||Copper-Nickel Clad Variety I Uncirculated||$3.50|
|1776–1976-D||Copper-Nickel Clad Variety II Uncirculated||$3.50|
|1776–1976-S||Copper-Nickel Clad Variety I Proof||$8|
|1776–1976-S||Copper-Nickel Clad Variety II Proof||$6|
|1776–1976-S||Silver Clad Variety I Uncirculated||$14|
|1776–1976-S||Silver Clad Variety I Proof||$17|
|1977||Copper-Nickel Clad Uncirculated||$3.50|
|1977-D||Copper-Nickel Clad Uncirculated||$3.50|
|1977-S||Copper-Nickel Clad Proof||$4|
|1978||Copper-Nickel Clad Uncirculated||$3.75|
|1978-D||Copper-Nickel Clad Uncirculated||$3.50|
|1978-S||Copper-Nickel Clad Proof||$4|
All the values listed above represent typical specimens. These have regular surface quality for their respective grades and conditions.
Better pieces command significantly higher premiums than the prices listed above. This is due to the difficulty of locating Eisenhower dollars (mainly clad business strikes) with few marks.
How the Eisenhower Dollar Was Created
United States Mint Chief Engraver Frank Gasparro created the coin's design. The first Eisenhower dollars were struck in 1971.
Cupro-nickel clad versions were produced at the Philadelphia and Denver Mint for circulation. Meanwhile, 40% silver examples were made in San Francisco as proofs for collectors.
Copper-nickel S-mint proofs didn't come around until 1973. This was the first year that regular uncirculated sets and proof sets included the Eisenhower dollar.
In 1975, the U.S. Mint began producing special commemorative circulating Eisenhower dollars honoring the 200th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence.
These Bicentennial dollars showcase a dual-dating feature declaring 1776–1976 on the obverse. The reverse design by Dennis Williams features the Liberty Bell superimposed on the Moon.
The standard Eisenhower dollar reverse and obverse dating resumed in 1977. Yet the end was in sight for the coin in 1978.
The public deemed the Eisenhower dollar too large. Americans were unwilling to carry large numbers of the heavy dollar coins during a period of runaway inflation.
40% Silver Eisenhower Dollar
The large dollar coin had failed to circulate well and was thus retired before 1979. This was when the Susan B. Anthony dollar, also designed by Gasparro, entered circulation.
However, the Susan B. Anthony dollar never caught on with the public, either. It was retired shortly after that in 1981. It returned for a one-year stint a general later in 1999 before being put out to numismatic pasture for good.
Collecting Eisenhower Dollars
The vast majority of hobbyists who collect Eisenhower dollars aim to complete a 32-coin set. It consists of all the regular-issue business-strike and proof coins. This includes the 40% silver Ikes dated 1971-S, 1972-S, 1973-S, 1974-S, and 1976-S.
Tricky Ikes: Only a small percentage of the total Eisenhower dollar mintage is 40% silver. Image source: Reddit user rddt1983
Such a set can be completed with coins in typical uncirculated and proof grades for less than $500. That includes the 40% silver key dates mentioned above.
Collectors with deeper pockets will add a much more expensive dimension to their Ike dollar objectives. They often pursue each of the regular-issue clad coins in Gem grades. They target proofs that grade Proof-67 or higher. Many will also seek the abundance of scarce varieties known for this series.
Proof Eisenhower Dollar
Surprisingly, clad business strikes in grades of MS-65 to MS-66 or better are among the most valuable Eisenhower dollars. There are few such Ikes that grade MS-68 or better.
The United States Mint took little care in handling or transporting these large, heavy circulating dollar coins. Understanding this, it becomes clearer why clad Ikes in Gem condition are so tough to locate. Most of the rarest Gem examples trade for more than $1,000 today.
Top-end proofs are not nearly as rare as their high-grade clad business-strike counterparts. They are tough to find with full cameo frosting, however. The 40% silver Ikes are among the easiest examples to find in grades of Proof-69 or Proof-70.
Meanwhile, deep cameo contrast is most common on the 1977-S and 1978-S Eisenhower dollars. This originated from a period when deep cameo frosting was becoming more the norm rather than the exception for U.S. proof coinage.
1972 Eisenhower Variety
The Eisenhower dollar boasts a wide array of varieties. Those who collect design varieties have plenty to love.
The most popular varieties are found among 1972 Ikes. It showcases at least three different versions of planet Earth on the reverse design.
Type I is a relatively low-relief variety showing three islands to the right of Florida.
Type II, the scarcest of these three varieties, shows no islands below Florida. (Water lines are in their place instead.)
Type III shows three islands below and to the left of Florida.
Clearly, there are some geography issues at hand with these varieties. They keep collectors busy!
Several other exciting oddities are out there. This includes various doubled dies and the rare 1974-D and 1977-D 40% silver transitional wrong-metal strikes.
There are numerous avenues in the Eisenhower dollar series that one can take. So many collectors have devoted their entire numismatic careers just to the Eisenhower dollar.
These modern clad coins offer a multitude of rewarding opportunities for collecting, research, and discovery—enough to satisfy even the most passionate of dedicated collectors for a lifetime!
Joshua McMorrow-Hernandez is a journalist, editor, and blogger who has won multiple awards from the Numismatic Literary Guild. He has also authored numerous books, including works profiling the history of the United States Mint and United States coinage.
More from the author:
How Much Is a Silver Dollar Worth?
Susan B. Anthony Dollars: Values and Series Rundown
What Is a Silver Certificate?
Silver Coins vs. Silver Bars
Buffalo Nickel Values and History
Posted In: blog
1971-S 40% Silver Peg Leg
1971-S 40% Silver Partial Peg Leg
1776-1976-S Bold rev. letters proof
1776-1976-S Thin rev. letters proo
Eisenhower Dollar Value Facts:
Date – Mint Rarity:
Eisenhower Dollar value is not dependent on key dates since there’s no key dates to be found in this series. Some people find the dual date 1776-1976 Bicentennial Ikes and think they’re rare, but such is not the case. You have to look into the varieties and condition grades to find the higher values, so most Eisenhower Dollars are worth $1, if you find them in a mint or proof set then they will be worth a few dollars.
Furthermore Eisenhower Dollars look silver but most are not, and when they are silver they’re clad in 40% silver. The 40% clad Ikes are found in blue envelopes, sealed in cello, and in brown boxes, housed in GSA type holders, and some were issued in Bicentennial sets with a quarter and a half dollar – all have “S” mint marks and each weigh 24.6 grams.
Grade – Condition:
Since Eisenhower Dollars are found abundantly in MS64 (Mint State) and lesser grades then the value is going to be low for these grades. The coins are large and that translates into more surface exposure to contact marks from other coins, even during the minting process, so they are worth only a few dollars or less when they’re MS64 and less. Raw coins rarely sell for more than $5 (most sell for $2 or less) so having them graded by a third party grading service will help the resell value.
However, if the coin does not grade at least MS65 then the submission fees far out-weight the value of the coin. You want to send Eisenhower Dollars that have the best chance at MS65 or better because their value can be upward of $150 for some dates and mints, but there’s some that need to come back MS66. In example, the 1974-D in MS65 is worth around $15 but in MS66 it’s value jumps to $120, so you wouldn’t want to send a 1974-D to be graded unless you’re certain it will be graded greater than MS65.
If you want value in your Eisenhower Dollars then you want to find and collect the varieties; but remember that even with varieties you want the mint state examples.
The 1971-S you want to look for what’s called the “Peg Leg” (a small tails extends off the R in LIBERTY) and those can sell for $50 in MS64. In 1972 you want look for the Type 2 Earth and the Type 3, but the Type 2 is the most valuable variety and can be worth over $1,000 in MS65. In 1776-1976 Bicentennial year look for the Thin Letter Reverse without a mint mark (Philadelphia) and this can be worth a few bucks in MS64 and up.
Also look for the 1971-D Tiger Claw and Happy Eagle and check all your 1974-D Ikes to see if they’re silver (not supposed to be).
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1976 was the last year that Eisenhower "Ike" dollars were minted. The 1776-1976 Eisenhower silver dollars have value as both numismatic coins and as silver bullion. Keep reading to learn more about these coins.
Type: Eisenhower Dollar
Face Value: $1.00
Composition: 60% copper, 40% silver
Silver Weight: .3161 oz.
Total Weight: 24.59 grams
Current Silver Bullion Value: $7.37
This coin has a special design on the reverse side of the coin to celebrate the Bicentennial of the United States. The bicentennial marks the 200th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence.
The reverse side of the coin features the Liberty Bell along with the moon. The obverse side of the coin features the same design as the Ike dollar series from previous years.
The US minted the 1776-1976 S Eisenhower silver dollar as an uncirculated coin and also as a proof coin. Most of the coins minted were proof coins. The mint mark can be found above the date.
It's important to note that not every 1776-1976 Eisenhower dollar is a silver coin. The US also minted the 1776-1976 Eisenhower copper-nickel clad coin with no mint mark, the 1776-1976 D Eisenhower copper-nickel clad coin, and the 1776-1976 S Eisenhower copper-nickel clad coin.
It's relatively easy to tell the difference between the silver clad coins and the copper-nickel clad coins. The silver coins will look shinier, and they will also weigh more. The silver coins weigh 24.59 grams compared to the copper-nickel coins that weigh 22.68 grams.
|Series||Location||Quantity Minted||1776-1976 S, Silver Clad||San Francisco||11,000,000|
This coin, regardless of condition, is worth at least its weight in silver. The silver melt value for this coin is $7.37 as of October 15, 2021. This melt value is calculated from the current silver spot price of $23.30 per ounce.
The standard 1776-1976 silver dollar is worth around $18 in MS 63 choice uncirculated condition. In MS 65 gem uncirculated condition the price rises to around $22.
The 1776-1976 proof silver dollar is worth around $20 in PR 65 condition. There were 4,000,000 proof coins minted.
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MS 63 choice uncirculated- In the major focal areas there are some blemishes or contact marks. The coin's luster might not be as prominent.
MS 65 gem uncirculated- There is strong luster and eye appeal. A few light contact marks may be present but they are barely noticeable.
PR 65 proof- There are no flaws to this coin. A few blemishes may be present.
The Red Book
1974 Silver Dollar
1973 Silver Dollar
1972 Silver Dollar