Cana­dian Sil­ver Dol­lars – Royal Cana­dian Mint Is­sues

Montreal Times - - News -

Un­for­tu­nately for col­lec­tors, Canada fazed out sil­ver coin pro­duc­tion in the late 60s, just as coin col­lect­ing was reach­ing a peak in pop­u­lar­ity. At this time, many mints around the world were start­ing to pro­duce spe­cial coins that were not for cir­cu­la­tion, but sold at a pre­mium to the face value, in deluxe pack­ag­ing di­rectly to col­lec­tors.

The RCM (Royal Cana­dian Mint), fi­nally got on board in a reg­u­lar way in 1971 by is­su­ing a spe­cial sil­ver dol­lar for the Bri­tish Columbia Cen­ten­nial.The coin is of sim­i­lar size to the old cir­cu­lat­ing sil­ver dol­lars (1967 and be­fore), but was pro­duced in only 50% sil­ver in­stead of 80% for the old ones. Housed in a nice black rect­an­gu­lar box with a outer card­board pro­tec­tor, it cer­tainly made a nice gift. Is­sue price was only $3, which was af­ford­able to the public...but also in­sured a large profit for the mint since there was only about 55 cents worth of sil­ver at the time.

The dol­lar was very pop­u­lar...in fact over 585,000 were sold in 1971 alone. Through­out the 1970s a new de­sign was made for each year on the same sized coin, and mil­lions were sold. In the late 1970s the price of sil­ver was ris­ing rapidly, and price ad­just­ments needed to be made. By 1980 the is­sue price had risen from $3 to $22 to try to keep up with in­fla­tion.

In 1981 the mint be­gan strik­ing a bet­ter qual­ity Proof coin. This dif­fers from pre­vi­ous dol­lars in that the coin is struck more than once, to give a frosted ap­pear­ance on the higher points of the coin. The proofs were sold at a slightly higher price than the orig­i­nal fin­ish (both were of­fered).All Cana­dian sil­ver dol­lars from this point on were struck in proof, and in cer­tain years a non­proof was also of­fered.

In 1992 the mint in­creased the sil­ver con­tent of each coin to 92.5% from 50%, and most years from that point on are at least 92.5%. In re­cent years some is­sues have even been pro­duced in 99.9%.

To­day, the is­sue price for 2012 is around $60...so this is an af­ford­able se­ries that it is pos­si­ble to col­lect.With over 40 years of coins, a large va­ri­ety of themes, and in­ter­est­ing art, it is a great way to start in the hobby. Since most coins were is­sued in cap­sules, they are al­most al­ways in new con­di­tion (with the ex­cep­tion of some ton­ing), so need­ing to un­der­stand coin grad­ing is not a prob­lem...like it would be with the older coins.

Many col­lec­tors who buy one of each will re­move the coins from the boxes, and make dis­plays in trays or al­bums.They are a re­ally nice look­ing set when as­sem­bled to­gether.

Feel free to call or email us if you have any ques­tions.

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