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5 Exciting Reasons to Collect American Silver Eagles


There are so many great reasons to collect American Silver Eagles, a bullion series that has become a numismatic hit with collectors since these coins were first struck in 1986. Click image to enlarge.

American Silver Eagles have been struck by the United States Mint since 1986 and have long since built an enthusiastic following of coin collectors who realize these coins have value and significance far beyond their bullion merits. While the American Silver Eagle has long been pitched primarily as a coin for investors hedging their bets against inflation, there are many who buy silver eagles with the intent of keeping them as numismatic collectibles, building entire sets of American Silver Eagles.

But what about this popular bullion series draws so many coin collectors? Let’s look at five awesome reasons the numismatic hobby has embraced American Silver Eagles as more than “just” bullion coins.

#1 – They’re Large, Heavy, and Silver

Ask just about any silver dollar enthusiast why they enjoy collecting Morgan Dollars or Peace Dollars, and they’re sure to cite the size of their coins and their silver content among the reasons they enjoy these classic series. American Silver Eagles are often seen as today’s silver dollar, and like their predecessors of yore are hefty silver coins that feel good in the hand and look great in a collection.

#2 – They’re Easy to Collect…

The United States Mint strikes a number of different types of American Silver Eagles each year, but the variety of issues are limited enough that the entire catalog of silver eagles is obtainable for many collectors to pursue. Most years during the first two decades of production saw the release of just two variants – the bullion (formerly known as “Uncirculated”) finish and proof. In more recent years these offerings have been expanded to include burnished, reverse proof, enhanced reverse proof, and a select number of special varieties.

#3 – …But They Aren’t Too Easy to Collect!

Sure, a date set of bullion-finish American Silver Eagles might knock the collector back only a few breaths more than their prevailing spot price but assembling the entire series will indeed require a significant investment. There are several scarce dates to be had among the American Silver Eagle series, including the rare 1995-W Proof, 2007 Reverse of 2008 Burnished, and 2019-S Enhanced Reverse Proof, just to name a few. The 2007 Reverse of 2008 Burnished variety goes for more than $450, while the 1995-W Proof and 2019-S Reverse Enhanced Proof fetch four-figure prices of around $3,500 and $2,250, respectively.

#4 – American Silver Eagles Are a Contemporary Series

Unlike obsolete coins, which have a fixed beginning and ending point for their respective series, the American Silver Eagle marches on to the current day, affording collectors a fun set they can build and continue working on year in, year out. There is one caveat to add here, and that is the fact that in 2021 the American Silver Eagle saw two subtypes – the last of the original heraldic eagle reverse design by John Mercanti and the first of its permanent replacement, a flying eagle motif by Emily Damstra. This creates a natural bookend for collectors who want to focus on the 1986 through 2021 Type I series and a fresh start for collectors hoping to kick off their silver eagle sets with the Type II design that launched in 2021.

#5 – PCGS Set Registry Opportunities Galore

One of the very best ways to collect American Silver Eagles is to assemble an entire set of these handsome coins in PCGS holders. This permits the collector to ensure their pieces are both authentic and accurately graded while protecting their exquisite beauty. There are more than two dozen different PCGS Registry Sets that are built around or incorporate American Silver Eagles, giving collectors bountiful opportunities to build competitive sets that involve these popular silver coins.

U.S. Silver Bullion Issues