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Morgan Silver Dollar Values & Prices

How Much Is My Morgan Silver Dollar Worth?

By , About.com Guide

Example of a Morgan Dollar
Image Courtesy of: Heritage Auction Galleries, Ha.com

This guide will give you an estimate of how much your Morgan silver dollar coins minted from 1878 to 1904, and again in 1921,  are worth.  The table listed below provides average coin values and prices based upon the condition of the coin.  If the coin shows evidence of wear on it due to being used in commerce, it considered "circulated." If it was never used, then it is classified as "uncirculated." The pictures below illustrate examples of each condition.  Some coins are very valuable even in well worn condition. Please understand that you cannot increase a coin's value by cleaning it. In fact, cleaned coins are worth considerable less and coin dealers can spot a cleaned coin immediately.  Therefore, take my advise and never clean your coins.

Introduction to Coin Values

There are many factors that go into determining the value of your coins. A basic understanding of how the coin market works will help. If your coin dealer runs out of 1895 Morgan Silver Dollars , he cannot just order more from the U.S. Mint because the mint does not make coins dated 1895 anymore. The coin dealer must replenish his inventory by buying coins from other dealers or from people that come into his store. What he pays you for that coin is known as the "wholesale price" or "value." If you want to buy that 1895 Morgan Dollar from the coin dealer, that is known as the "retail price" or "price."

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Market Analysis

Historically, Morgan dollars have always performed well. The average uncirculated coin has increased in value almost 400% since 1970.  These coins are made out of 90% silver and 10% copper and contain exactly 0.77344 troy ounces of pure silver. As of this writing, the spot price of silver is approximately $22.88 per troy ounce. Therefore, each coin contains $17.70 worth of silver.   But don't expect to walk in to a coin shop with a bag of coins and have the coin dealer dig through them to pull out the expensive ones for you.  If you want top dollar for your coins, you need to sort them and organize them so the dealer can quickly see what you have.

Key Dates, Rarities and Varieties

The Morgan dollars listed below are worth considerably more in any condition than common Morgan dollars.  As such, these coins are frequently counterfeit or altered from common  Morgan dollars.  Therefore, before you start celebrating your early retirement with your new found fortune, have the coin authenticated by a reputable coin dealer or third party grading service.

  • 1881 CC
  • 1885 CC
  • 1889 CC
  • 1893 CC
  • 1893 S
  • 1895 Proof
  • 1895 S

Although not extremely rare, the 1878 Morgan dollar was minted with two different reverse dies. The first die created had an eagle on the reverse  with eight tail feathers.  But after some research, the people at the mint realized that the American bald eagle only has seven tail feathers. Therefore they created a new die with a bald eagle with only seven tail feathers. The photos below illustrate the difference between these two different coins.

1878 Morgan Dollar 8TF
1878 with 8 Tail Feathers (8 TF)
Lincoln Cent Average Uncirculated Condition
1878 with 7 Tail Feathers (7 TF)
Images Courtesy of: Heritage Auction Galleries, Ha.com
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Condition or Grade Examples

Morgan Dollar Average Circulated Condition Circulated Morgan Dollar Average Uncirculated Condition Uncirculated
Click on the photos above for a larger image.
Photos courtesy of Teletrade Coin Auctions, www.teletrade.com
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 Mint Marks

Morgan Dollars were produced at five different mints: Philadelphia (no mint mark), Carson City Nevada (CC), New Orleans (O), Denver (D) and San Francisco (S).  Not all coins were produced at all mints in all years. As illustrated in the picture below, the mint mark is located on the reverse of the coin, just below the bow in the wreath.

Morgan Dollar mint mark location
Mint Mark Location
Image Courtesy of: Heritage Auction Galleries, Ha.com

Average Circulated and Uncirculated Values & Prices

The following table lists the buy price (what you can expect to pay to a dealer to purchase the coin) and sell value (what you can expect a dealer to pay you if you sell the coin). The first column lists the date and mint mark (see the photo above) followed by the buy price and the sell value for an average circulated Morgan silver dollar. The next two columns list the buy price and the sell value for an average uncirculated. These are approximate retail prices and wholesale values. The actual offer you receive from a particular coin dealer will vary depending on the actual grade of the coin and a number of other factors that determine its worth.

Date & Mint Circulated   Uncirculated
Buy Sell Buy Sell
1878 8TF $36.00 $20.00 $200.00 $100.00
1878 7TF $35.00 $20.00 $90.00 $70.00
1878 CC $80.00 $40.00 $300.00 $200.00
1878 S $35.00 $20.00 $66.00 $48.00
1879 $35.00 $20.00 $65.00 $46.00
1879 CC $200.00 $100.00 $5,500.00 $4,300.00
1879 O $35.00 $20.00 $150.00 $100.00
1879 S $35.00 $20.00 $59.00 $39.00
1880 $35.00 $20.00 $60.00 $44.00
1880 CC $200.00 $100.00 $500.00 $400.00
1880 O $35.00 $20.00 $200.00 $200.00
1880 S $35.00 $20.00 $54.00 $39.00
1881 $35.00 $20.00 $61.00 $43.00
1881 CC * $300.00 $200.00 $500.00 $300.00
1881 O $35.00 $20.00 $62.00 $43.00
1881 S $35.00 $20.00 $58.00 $37.00
1882 $35.00 $20.00 $56.00 $38.00
1882 CC $90.00 $40.00 $200.00 $200.00
1882 O $35.00 $20.00 $57.00 $44.00
1882 S $35.00 $20.00 $56.00 $41.00
1883 $35.00 $20.00 $60.00 $42.00
1883 CC $90.00 $50.00 $200.00 $200.00
1883 O $35.00 $20.00 $55.00 $41.00
1883 S $36.00 $20.00 $1,400.00 $1,000.00
Date & Mint Circulated   Uncirculated
Buy Sell Buy Sell
1884 $35.00 $20.00 $61.00 $41.00
1884 CC $100.00 $40.00 $200.00 $200.00
1884 O $35.00 $20.00 $56.00 $40.00
1884 S $36.00 $20.00 $24,000.00 $18,000.00
1885 $35.00 $20.00 $59.00 $37.00
1885 CC * $400.00 $200.00 $600.00 $400.00
1885 O $35.00 $20.00 $55.00 $40.00
1885 S $38.00 $20.00 $300.00 $200.00
1886 $35.00 $20.00 $59.00 $38.00
1886 O $35.00 $20.00 $1,900.00 $1,300.00
1886 S $58.00 $30.00 $400.00 $300.00
1887 $35.00 $20.00 $59.00 $38.00
1887 O $38.00 $20.00 $90.00 $60.00
1887 S $38.00 $20.00 $200.00 $100.00
1888 $35.00 $20.00 $58.00 $40.00
1888 O $35.00 $20.00 $59.00 $42.00
1888 S $110.00 $60.00 $400.00 $300.00
1889 $38.00 $20.00 $57.00 $44.00
1889 CC * $900.00 $400.00 $36,000.00 $26,000.00
1889 O $35.00 $20.00 $300.00 $200.00
1889 S $46.00 $24.00 $300.00 $200.00
1890 $35.00 $20.00 $59.00 $40.00
1890 CC $90.00 $40.00 $600.00 $400.00
1890 O $39.00 $20.00 $80.00 $60.00
1890 S $35.00 $20.00 $80.00 $50.00
Date & Mint Circulated   Uncirculated
Buy Sell Buy Sell
1891 $38.00 $20.00 $120.00 $80.00
1891 CC $90.00 $40.00 $500.00 $400.00
1891 O $38.00 $20.00 $200.00 $200.00
1891 S $36.00 $20.00 $100.00 $60.00
1892 $38.00 $20.00 $300.00 $200.00
1892 CC $200.00 $100.00 $1,900.00 $1,300.00
1892 O $38.00 $20.00 $300.00 $200.00
1892 S $66.00 $30.00 $51,000.00 $38,000.00
1893 $200.00 $100.00 $900.00 $700.00
1893 CC * $400.00 $200.00 $5,600.00 $4,100.00
1893 O $200.00 $100.00 $4,600.00 $3,200.00
1893 S * $3,900.00 $1,800.00 $130,000.00 $90,000.00
1894 $1,100.00 $600.00 $4,600.00 $3,300.00
1894 O $49.00 $23.00 $2,200.00 $1,500.00
1894 S $63.00 $34.00 $1,000.00 $700.00
1895 Proof * $23,000.00 $12,000.00 $52,000.00 $39,000.00
1895 O $300.00 $200.00 $30,000.00 $21,000.00
1895 S * $500.00 $300.00 $5,000.00 $3,700.00
1896 $35.00 $20.00 $59.00 $41.00
1896 O $38.00 $20.00 $3,800.00 $2,800.00
1896 S $44.00 $22.00 $2,700.00 $2,000.00
1897 $35.00 $20.00 $55.00 $40.00
1897 O $39.00 $20.00 $2,400.00 $1,800.00
1897 S $38.00 $20.00 $90.00 $70.00
Date & Mint Circulated   Uncirculated
Buy Sell Buy Sell
1898 $35.00 $20.00 $57.00 $42.00
1898 O $35.00 $20.00 $58.00 $42.00
1898 S $36.00 $20.00 $400.00 $300.00
1899 $130.00 $70.00 $300.00 $200.00
1899 O $35.00 $20.00 $58.00 $42.00
1899 S $39.00 $20.00 $400.00 $300.00
1900 $35.00 $20.00 $59.00 $41.00
1900 O $35.00 $20.00 $53.00 $39.00
1900 S $36.00 $20.00 $300.00 $200.00
1901 $40.00 $20.00 $6,800.00 $4,700.00
1901 O $35.00 $20.00 $61.00 $42.00
1901 S $40.00 $20.00 $700.00 $400.00
1902 $35.00 $20.00 $80.00 $50.00
1902 O $35.00 $20.00 $59.00 $39.00
1902 S $90.00 $40.00 $500.00 $400.00
1903 $39.00 $20.00 $72.00 $51.00
1903 O $300.00 $100.00 $400.00 $300.00
1903 S $110.00 $60.00 $5,300.00 $3,800.00
1904 $35.00 $20.00 $200.00 $100.00
1904 O $35.00 $20.00 $59.00 $41.00
1904 S $50.00 $26.00 $2,700.00 $1,800.00
1921 $35.00 $20.00 $49.00 $33.00
1921 D $35.00 $20.00 $56.00 $44.00
1921 S $35.00 $20.00 $56.00 $39.00

*= See the section above "Key Dates, Rarities and Varieties" for more information on these coins.

These values have been compiled through my personal analysis of the coin market, referencing publications such as Numismatic News, Coin World, "The Official Blue Book; Handbook of U.S. Coins", "The Official Red Book; A Guide Book of United States Coins", The Coin Dealer Newsletter, published auction results and consulting with multiple coin dealers.

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Disclaimer: The information on this site and all subsequent communications are provided for discussion purposes only, and should not be misconstrued as investment advice. All information, including valuations, on this website has been compiled from reliable sources and every effort has been made to eliminate errors and questionable data. However, the possibility of an error in a work of this magnitude always exists. Additionally, further analysis, research and/or discoveries may challenge the beliefs presented in this article. The author and About.com will not be responsible for any losses that may occur in the purchase, sale, or other transaction of coins and other items because of the information that is contained on this website. Visitors who feel they may have discovered an error or inconsistency are asked to please contact the guide so that the situation may be investigated and/or corrected. Under no circumstances does this information contained on this website represent a recommendation to buy or sell coins, precious metals, exonumia or paper currency.

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