ZanzibarCoins's Blog

23 Dec 2020

Large Dollar Coins, Morgan Dollars, Part Four :)

Young Numismatists Exchange | ZanzibarCoins

Well... I just realized I never actually wrapped up this blog series. So, here we go lol. It's been too long since I've been on here -- senior year has decided to suck away all of my free time lol. That, and moving. Agh. Seventh time? Eighth? I don't know. At this point I've lost track lol. I aced that presentation though, I have yet to hear how I did on the paper that went with it, but fingers crossed... I have really missed being on here. Just out of curiosity, what are y'all's plans for this Christmas, and/or next year? I am so excited for both Christmas and the coming year. One of the things I am most looking forwards to for next year is our prom. I did not get a junior prom, thanks to COVID, but we will be doing a prom this year, and I am so excited! (I'm actually on the committee lol) But anyways, Morgan Dollars...

By now, the year is 1890, and the month is July. Despite the early hiccups, and Philadelphia having to drop her other coinage in order to fulfill the monthly quota at the beginning, the mintage of the Morgan Dollar has been running steady for the past twelve and a half years. But then, in the month of July, on July 14th to be exact, Washington dropped a bomb. A bomb by the name of the Sherman Silver Purchase Act. The Act was actually authored by none other than John Sherman, the former Secretary of the Treasury now turned Ohio senator. The Act forced the Treasury to increase the amount of silver they purchased to 4,500,000 troy ounces each month. Which meant that the Morgan Dollars, containing about .8 troy ounces of silver each coin, would begin to hit staggering mintage numbers. The Act was written with good intentions. Its supporters believed that the increase in the amount of silver purchased would cause inflation, thus relieving the nation's farmers. Not to mention, the large purchases of silver would cause the price of silver to rise and thus benefit, and increase the profits of, miners. Thankfully, it did provide that, despite the requirement of large purchases of silver (indefinitely), the Mint must coin 2,000,000 silver dollars each month only until 1891. The Treasury already had quite the surplus of silver dollars, so the dollars' mintages dropped sharply in 1892, and then on, with only 880 minted in Philadelphia in 1895! The remaining silver, left over from the dollars' mintage, was used to mint dimes, quarters, and half dollars.

For the first two years, the Act didn't really cause any problems. But then 1893 hit. The Philadelphia and Reading Railroad, the National Cordage Company, and multiple other large industrial firms, went suddenly bankrupt. That led to both bank runs, and bank failures. This became known as the Panic of 1893. In June of that year, President Grover Cleveland believed that the Panic was caused by the inflation that was being generated by the Sherman Silver Purchase Act. He called a special session of Congress to repeal the Act. It took them six months to repeal the Act, but they finally did, in November. On June 13th of 1898, Congress ordered the coining of all the remaining bullion that had been purchase under the Sherman Silver Purchase Act into silver dollars. Thus, silver dollar production rose again, until the bullion was finally exhausted in 1904 (in case you wonder just how much silver was purchased under the Act...), when production of the Morgan dollars ceased. And thus it was, that the beautiful Lady was no longer seen on any silver dollars.

So sorry I forgot to finish this series back when I started it! I hope y'all enjoyed this final installment of the series, and I hope y'all have a very Merry Christmas!!!

~ZC :)



Level 5

Nice blog and nice finish to the story. A time when silver and commerce were in lock step.


Level 6

Great finish to your series. Thanks.


Level 6

Nice blog about Morgans. Enjoyed it! ; )


Level 5

Love these coins! I really need to start collecting them. So far, I just have one for my type set. Thanks for the blog my guy! Cheers, NM


Level 5

I am not sure I read your other parts to this series, so I will have to get back to them. Thanks for the great blog!


Level 7

Thanks for the blog but I'm probably the only one who doesn't like them. I think liberty's face is heavy and the eagle weak. That's my own personal opinion. Good work thanks.. P.S. I do own about 30 of them.

I. R. Bama

Level 5

I enjoy learning more about Morgan's. Thank you!

It's Mokie

Level 6

Wow, Senior Prom, ours was 44 years ago. I hope you really enjoy yours. I am doing nothing special for Christmas but am looking forward to volunteering at the South Hills Coin Club Show in February (fingers Xed) and the PAN shows in May and October. This should be a much better year. Thanks for sharing your research on the Morgan.


Level 5

Thanks for the blog!


Level 5

First, I hope you enjoy the heck out of your Senior Prom, I still remember mine four plus decades later. Thanks for this blog, it is an area that my knowledge is sorely lacking. Please keep your priorities where you have them, we miss you, but will be here when you have time. Looking forward to hearing from you when time permits. Good luck in school and with your collections! Later!


Level 5

Wow, that is a lot of silver back in those days ! Let us know all about Prom ! On the committee is fantastic ! Nice blog, that was really interesting information. Did not know so much silver was around back then, but I guess with all those Morgan dollars being minted, silver was around. Absolutely amazing.

Thanks for sharing! I never knew exactly why the Morgan was discontinued in 1904, and had even less an idea that it was in 1898! Good luck in the next term!

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