Were these Silver Dollars meant to be a Secret? The 1971 "Secret' Silver Eisenhower Dollars!
On July 27, 1971, President Nixon presented the first Proof Eisenhower dollar, fresh off the presses of the San Francisco Mint, to former First Lady Mrs. Mamie Eisenhower at a White House reception. This solemn ceremony began one of the mint's most popular coin series': The Eisenhower Dollar. When it was initially launched it was received with huge fan fare...with most of it coming from the fact that the Silver Dollar was back after a 35 year hiatus!
The Philadelphia and Denver Mints struck these new Eisenhower dollar for circulation in a new metal type unused before... copper-nickel clad (sometimes referred to as "cupro-nickel clad")…and it was actually very popular! Their total combined mintage was in excess of 100 million coins. More Eisenhower dollars were produced than its predecessor, the Peace Dollar, had struck its last entire decade of issue.
But there were a select number of Proof issues struck at the Iconic "Old Granite Lady", the San Francisco Mint, and those are the most sought after Eisenhower dollars in the entire collection!
The 'Secret' San Francisco Mint Issue
Did you know...The 1971 Eisenhower Dollar was not included in the US Mint Proof & Uncirculated Set!
The special release Eisenhower dollar presented to the former First Lady was a San Francisco Mint Silver Proof issue...making it one of the sought after "Secret Eisenhower Dollars".
The San Francisco Mint struck two coins in 1971, an Uncirculated version (known as the "blue pack"-because of its iconic blue packaging) and a Proof version (known as a "brown pack").
Both versions of the coin were special silver issues with neither being released into circulation, making them a collector's dream!
Was it meant to be a real "secret"?...Probably not, but very few know that they exist at all, making them the essential "Secret Collector's Coin". The story is really cool, but it is the mintage figures that back up this Eisenhower Dollar's status among collectors...less than 3% of all first year coins were San Francisco Mint Silvers!