slybluenote's Blog

01 Aug 2020

Key Date Proof Sets

Coins-United States | slybluenote

Good morning fellow collectors!

As promised in an earlier blog, I am previewing the 4 "Key Date" proof sets that I purchased. First, I would like to discuss what is the true meaning of "Key Date". Further research indicates that there are also "Modern" Key Date sets. Some are silver while others are not. I have previously got the 2012 Silver proof set and didn't even realize that it's also called a Modern Key Date proof set. Some dealers list 10 key date proof sets while others list only 4. My latest purchase was the one that listed the 4 years, 1960, 1974, 1986 and 1996. These are the sets I will be sharing with you today. I paid $83.95 for the 4 sets which average out to just a little over $20 a set, which I think is a fairly good deal. Below is the description of these sets that is on the website of the dealer:

"A simple collection that is loaded! It is 4 sets in total, with each set the lowest mintage proof set of the decade. So the finest ( proof ) and the rarest ( lowest mintage figure ) ... but that's not all ...
1960: A Vintage 5 pc set in the old "manila" or "poly pack" presentation. But inside we have three 90% silver coins: the Roosevelt dime, Washington quarter and Franklin Half Dollar. When you add them up to come to just under an ounce of precious silver. And the 3 silver proofs are selling for upwards of $69.50 by themselves.
1974: This "Black Pack" is a 6 coin set. It contains the traditional cent through half dollar, but also includes the Eisenhower Proof.
1986: The lowest and key set of the 1980's was 1986. It's in the "Purple Pack" family. Remember, 1986 was the 100th anniversary of our Statue of Liberty and the US Mint added new commemorative half dollars and dollars which took a few of the available dollars to spend off the table - 25 years later our benefit.1996: This "Green Pack" is one of the Keys to the past 50 years of proof set production. It's miniscule mintage is only a few thousand off of 1960 .. the lowest regular issue set over the 40 year span."

I'm really happy with my purchase. I have looked over each year, and these sets enhanced my proof set collection. My question is in what year do the "Modern Key Date" proof sets start? Are there other years besides the 2012 Silver and 1996 Prestige proof sets? I assume this is part of the numismatic education. In case you didn't visit my proof set collection, the mintage for the 1960 set is1,691,602, mintage for the 1974 is2,612,568, mintage for the 1986 is2,411,180 and mintage for the 1996 is1,695,244. I'll continue to plug along. Since I'm talking about key dates, I'm including a couple of pictures from a key date in my life. When I turned 60, my wife and sister-in-law bought me and my brother an all expense paid vacation to Muscle Shoals, Alabama and Clarksdale, Mississippi since it was the only thing in my "Bucket List".

Enjoy the pictures and stay safe, HEALTHY, and coronavirus free until next time!

P.S. I may have to borrow Gary's camera and expertise the next time I photograph coins ! :-))



Level 5

Beautiful proof sets ! 1964 is the cut off date for me. Pretty soon there will be another cutoff date for moderns? Maybe year 2000 !


Level 4

Beautiful proofs, Charlie!


Level 7

I always consider 1964 as.the modern age. Something can be said.for 1958.

I think there should be more than one boundary between sets. Pre-1950, 1951-58, 58-64, and onwards. That 1960 proof set has some choice pieces.


Level 6

My opinion is 1950 for modern proof sets/

It's Mokie

Level 6

I think of 1965 as the first year of the moderns. My Roosevelt Dime and Washington Quarter collection both stop at 1964. Thanks for sharing your recent purchases Charlie, are you eventually going to go for all the Modern Proof Sets?

I. R. Bama

Level 5

A trip to Muscle Shoals! Love it, Muscle Shoals Sound and all the history of all the great music that came out of that recording studio. Having spent a number of years living in Tuscaloosa going the THE University and working at Bryce State hospital, you would have thought I would have gotten there, I did see just about the rest of Alabama, My loss... You are putting together a wonderful collection! Keep on Keeping on!


Level 5

This is only my opinion, but to me, there are two major categories, classic and modern, and I think there should be a clear boundary between these two. For instance, I think the modern boundary should be 1948 in the year the Franklin Half Dollar started. Why 1948? Because 1947 represents the last year of the Teddy Roosevelt era coins. Another case can be made for 1965 when except for the Kennedy Half Dollar the use of silver in coining ended and copper-nickel began.

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