Commemoratives are collectible coins that are reissued by the minting press or by the round company in commemoration of a particular event, or in commemoration of an earlier coin. The majority of modern commemorative gold coins you will find were issued from the date 1960 and onward. Some U.S. commemorative coins are considered collectables, (usually called proof or uncirculated editions) while others are commonly circulated.
What are some of the best early gold commemoratives to look for? Though rare, the 1848 2 1/2 dollar gold piece is believed to be the first commemorative coin ever issued in the U.S. The 1892 Half Dollar commemorating the 400th anniversary of Columbus famous voyage is another popular collectable. The term “early commemorative” coinage is often used in reference to the time period of 1954 to 1982, whereas modern commemorative half dollars or modern commemorative dollars are in reference to collectibles that were released after the year 1982.
Past commemorative coins in the U.S. celebrated the birth of George Washington, as well as President Kennedy’s contributions, and President Eisenhower’s. Bicentennial coins released in 1976 were very popular for a time, though recently State Quarters coins (started in 1999) have found their own collecting fan base. Within the last few years, we have seen coins commemorating the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth, and even the birth of Abe Lincoln. As recently as 2005, we saw the commemorative Westward Journey Nickel series, which celebrated the 200-year anniversary of the Louisiana Purchase.
Sometimes commemorative coins are the only way you can own a piece of history. After all, an original coin like the 1933 Double Eagle Coin is a million dollar rarity. However, the American Gold Eagle rerelease takes the same image and circulates the coin for new collectors. Own a piece of history with a commemorative or release collectable coin series.